Silva's changes breathe fresh life into Everton

By Michael Kenrick 19/10/2019 359comments  |  Jump to last

Marco Silva he went as far as making a rod for his own back by declaring that this weekend’s clash with West Ham at Goodison Park is a “must-win” game

Marco Silva goes into a match that he himself has declared as "must-win" against a talented but unpredictable West Ham side.

Marco Silva says it is a “must-win” game. It very clearly is — the Blues can ill-afford to lose five on the bounce and a draw would be hugely unsatisfactory — but, is his neck really on the line for a win against the Hammers?

How he sets up what's left of his first-team squad, missing Coleman through suspension, Gbamin after surgery on his quadriceps muscle, Tosun to a groin strain and Delph through yet another injury (this time his hamstring), seems critical to discerning fans, but his reluctance to change things or play up-and-coming youngsters instead of his old and tired favourites is now why Everton languish in the bottom three, with the Hammers looking to jump up into the top three on the back of a win.

Silva, it seems, has finally seen sense: Schneiderlin is not involved and Sigurdsson is finally dropped, with Tom Davies partnering Andre Gomes in defensive midfield, and Iwobi given the prime creative role with Bernard and Walcott on the flanks and Richarlison leading the line.

It was a slow start after West Ham kicked off, with Davies trying to get Everton on the ball, but the flow went the other way and a rash challenge by Richarlison gave the Hammers an early set-piece opportunity that was driven wide by Lanzini.

There was some danger from a Digne long throw but it was ultimately cleared but Bernard drove forward and a corner was eventually won, but kept away from Richarlison.

Walcott did very well to control a ball, turn and shoot but it was deflected wide, and a series of corners, Davies having a massive chance at the back post that was saved point-blank on the line by Roberto Jimenez, when better placement would have seen the opening goal.

Everton were at least taking the game to the Hammers but it was not convincing, and a duller pattern soon transpired, with the Blues having to defend and unable to get that far forward. But a neat, almost amazing piece of ball control by Bernard was rewarded by a goal when the chance seemed gone when he checked back after getting in behind, a deft flick past Jimenez from a very narrow angle crossing the line for a very important opening goal.

Richarlison made a great run down the left but ran out of room with no-one there in support, more corners produced no more chances. But some great interplay put Richarlison through on goal, only for him to hit the outside of the post with his opportunist shot. Iwobi wriggled into a shooting position but his low drive was saved. Walcott was next to shoot from distance.

Fornals got the better of Keane on a long ball but Pickford saved easily as West Ham made a rare move to threaten, Everton defending competently and looking to move the ball forward with plenty of effort but not enough guile.

There was some good forward movement and running by Everton but the incisive and accurate passing wasn't there to create meaningful chances before the break, with Davies picking up a stupid yellow card for stopping West Hm from taking a free-kick.

Yarmelenko replaced Anderson as Everton worked the ball around well but Richarlison was yards offside as he hammered the ball into the Gwladys Street net. A slew of more offside decisions disrupted the flow of the game, Richarlison and Diop having a bit of a battle. Fornals got into a good position but screwed his shot wide, a warning that Everton's lead was very slender.

Some better play won the first corner of the second half, Mina's header too soft to beat the West Ham keeper. Everton were still controlling the pace of the game, with spells of good movement and pace, but the Hammers kept coming back at them, without really threatening. Walcott was fouled but Everton were too quick for the referee, who called it back, for a moderate effort from Digne tha bobbled wide,

A good spell of pressure won another corner, and a better Mina header that was still saved by Roberto. A fabulous strike by Walcott smacked the frame of the goal with Roberto well beaten. A clumsy foul at the other end by Gomes gave West Ham a rare set-piece chance, Pickford equal to Yarmelenko's strike.

Everton got their own chance for a set-piece but the rehearsed routine was spoilt by Mina moving offside too early, while West Ham continued to pose a limited threat despite using all their subs.

Iwobi got free and looked certain to score but poked his shot straight at the goalkeeper, Mina's header in from the corner was strangely disallowed for no apparent reason. Diop was finally carded for his excessive attentions on Richarlison. A lively Walcott ne-two saw the winger lash in a low cross that spun goalward off a defender's leg only to hit the keeper's head and fly over the bar!

Masuaka fouled Sidibe but Tierney gave West Ham a corner and the ball was played deep to back post but somehow Pickford kept the ball out. Kean replaced Walcott who had put in some good work but, as ever, failed to score. Sigurdsson then replaced Iwobi, who had also tried but should have done better, the Icelander having a great chance with his first touch, a shot parried away by the keeper.

Ajeti got behind the Blues defence but Pickford made himself big as the flag went up for offside. The second goal finally came, ad it was a peach from Sigurdsson, a fantastic strike from outside the Dee.

Scorers: Bernard (17'), Sigurdsson (90+3')

Everton: Pickford; Sidibe, Keane, Mina, Digne; Gomes [Y:90'], Davies [Y:45+3']; Walcott (85' Kean), Iwobi (87' Sigurdsson), Bernard; Richarlison.
Subs not Used: Lössl, Holgate, Baines, Baningime, Calvert-Lewin.

West Ham United: Roberto; Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Masuaku; Rice [Y:70']; Felipe Anderson (46' Yarmolenko), Noble (74' Ajeti), Lanzini, Fornals (63' Wilshere); Haller.
Subs not Used: Martin, Balbuena, Zabaleta, Snodgrass.

Referee: Paul Tierney

Attendance: 39,263

Reader Comments (359)

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John Reynolds
1 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:34:58
Interesting team. Not immediately obvious (to me) how he’ll line them out. At least he’s rolling the dice. Glad to see Tom and Bernard getting a run. Not so delighted to see Theo back.
Mike Kehoe
2 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:37:10
Team sheet is encouraging, Gylfi dropped and Schneiderlin not in the squad. Has Marco been looking at ToffeeWeb?
Ian Lloyd
3 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:37:17
What a strange selection?!??

No “recognised” striker.

Michael Kenrick
4 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:38:12
I thought Richarlison is a striker.

Isn't that what he does for Brazil?

John Hammond
5 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:39:09
Reported as Richarlison up front. Wouldn't be surprised to see Walcott there. Glad to see Iwobi at 10 and Davies given a chance.
Ray Roche
6 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:39:45
Michael, he must be playing Richarlison down the middle. Theo 🤦🏻‍♂️
Ian Lloyd
7 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:41:21
He actually plays outside right with Firminho as the striker.
Kevin Prytherch
8 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:42:17
Good points...

Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin dropped
Davies given a chance
Baningime in the bench

Bad points:

Two wingers? (If Bernard is Number 10), usually leaves us exposed.
Richarlison up front was questionable for the team last season.

Ian Lloyd
9 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:42:35
My point is he's not picked Calvert-Lewin or Kean.

They're our supposed 2 “recognised strikers” out of 3 with Tosun.

John Boswell
10 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:43:13
Not overly surprised by Theo's inclusion as his defensive work has been appreciated on these pages and we have a substitute right back in the side today. Our coach is cautious.

Good to see Richarlison up top, he was anonymous for most of our last match. I wish him well today, same for our team. COYB.

Jim Harrison
11 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:45:19
Kevin, 8

Who was top scorer last season?

David McMullen
12 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:48:53
These early games are always flat
Andrew Keatley
13 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:49:48
Glad that Pellegrini has decided against starting Yarmolenko; he scores for fun against us.
Ernie Baywood
14 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:51:14
Bringing back Gomes and dropping Schneiderlin finally gives us a midfield that will move the ball forward and actually give the attack a chance to get on the ball earlier without an opponent up their clacker.

I would have liked to see Richarlison on the wing and Gylfi in the 10 position. They would have been the biggest beneficiaries of that midfield change. It's baby out with the bathwater.

I'm surprised, which in itself is a pleasant surprise, but I don't think we needed that many changes. Is Walcott really the answer? What was the question?

Michael Kenrick
15 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:51:37
Richarlison has not been great up front, admittedly, despite scoring a few last season, but I think Silva needed to do something. Kean and Calvert-Lewin have proven ineffective and Tosun is out injured.

Maybe if Richarlson and Walcott play more as a pair of strikers, possibly even supported by Bernard cutting in, with Iwobi creating and following up, perhaps there's a chance this could work.

Ian Lloyd
16 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:52:51
I hope so, Michael!
Kevin Prytherch
17 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:53:08
Jim 11 - Lampard was top scorer for some seasons with Chelsea. Didn’t see them putting him up front.
Paul Tran
18 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:55:34
It's the random selection generator again!
Jay Wood

19 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:56:42
Nice to see Baningime back in the first team set up. An indication he is recovered from his injury problems last season and an acknowledgement by the manager he must seek from within the club solutions to the injuries to Delph and Gbamin.

Never convinced by Richarlison as central forward if that is how Silva plays it.

Kim Vivian
21 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:57:24
Despite a series of negative posts from me, I feel a sudden surge of optimism today. 3-1 win and coming back from the first goal.

Good pills, these!

Tony Everan
22 Posted 19/10/2019 at 11:58:51
Paul #18,

Are you doubting our manager's tactical acumen? Surely not.

Christy Ring
23 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:04:16
I think it's the last throw of the dice. Richarlison did well upfront last season but I would have liked to see Calvert-Lewin and Kean as a front 2.

Beni on the bench – has Silva finally come to his senses with Schneiderlin or is he injured?

Charles McCann
24 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:09:34
Great to see some changes made to our lineup today. Richarlison knows where the back of the net is so happy to see him get another chance up front. Only concern is our right side maybe weak defensively. Definitely overall I feel this lineup is a big improvement. Fingers crossed for a win : )
Annika Herbert
25 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:13:19
Nice to see he has finally made changes, although I am not ecstatic to see Walcott in the line-up. But, fingers crossed, let's hope it all works out and we grab a much-needed win.
John Graham
26 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:18:05
Is Delph injured? I can't remember seeing anything apart from him pulling out of the England squad.

Down to the bare bones in central midfield. Let's hope things start to click. COYB

John McGimpsey
27 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:25:19
Well I can that falling flat on its face...
Paul Setter
28 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:26:39
Holgate for Keane, who has been diabolical all season, would be the only change I would add to that line-up but at least the intent to change it has happened.
Paul Tran
29 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:27:36
Tony #18, Yes. Amongst other things.
Ray Roche
30 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:28:05

Delph is injured which is why he pulled out of the England squad.

George Cumiskey
31 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:32:41
Walcott.... can you believe it!
John Graham
32 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:51:52
Yes, I can believe it. Nice ball to Bernard.

Get in there.

1 - 0

Ernie Baywood
33 Posted 19/10/2019 at 12:53:09
Every time we get it we go forward... where has this Everton been?

Maybe I'm just bitter that I traveled halfway around the world for the last two home games...

Jim Marray
34 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:07:39
Isn't it amazing what a bit of energy and some quick passing can do. This is what has been missing so often this season
John Graham
35 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:10:02
I think we need another goal before half-time.
Ciarán McGlone
36 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:15:47
Amazing how purposeful we look without Sigurdsson cloying up the Number 10 spot.. fluid, dynamic and with intent. He was a fairly obvious problem. Front four having a great game in his absence. The two behind doing far better than recently too.

I still think Silva's an utter mug and we are on an inevitable hiding to nothing with him in charge though.

Ernie Baywood
38 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:23:51
For what it's worth Ciaran, I disagree completely.

The front 4 have been as frustrating as they've ever been in blue. The difference is that the ball gets straight to them before the opposition half is clogged with both sets of players.

Them number of times we've got 4 v 4 or 5... that's not down to the 4. That's down to us getting it to them early. It's frustrating that they haven't done more with all those great positions and I'd bet Sigurdsson will be sitting there wondering what he could have done in those positions.

Christy Ring
39 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:30:18
I know it's only halftime, but a lot more intensity, quick passing, different game plan and tactics. Why did it take so long to change from the slow pedestrian football, with two defensive midfielders, who offer nothing going forward.
Jay Wood

41 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:30:30
EXCELLENT first half.

Apart from his chance which he really should have scored from, Tom Davies has been outstanding. Back to his best. Getting and giving the ball in the same movement.

Does it always come off? No. But time and again the ball goes forward and turns the opposition.

Who else thought the chance had gone when Bernard saw the ball seemingly run away from him with the keeper closing in? A touch of good fortune, but no shortage of skill from the wee man.

Theo Walcott has also had a very good first half in both halves of the pitch. Richarlison chasing everything. Gomes purring at times (but I do wish he would stop giving up so many cheap fouls). Iwobi a bit on the margin of things. He shys away from the physical side of the game and in that half, I didn't like the couple of times when he lost the ball and he flung his arms out and spun away in frustration with the ball still alive close to him.

Digne looks so much better in the company of Bernard. Keane and Mina solid. Pickford redundant.

But one goal is never enough with this Everton team. It's very rare we see two good halves of football from Everton in the same game. How resilient can we be if they score?

But I like the energy and drive they displayed in the first 45 minutes.

Ciarán McGlone
42 Posted 19/10/2019 at 13:33:25
Yes, Ernie... I see that you were lamenting Sigurdsson not starting.

We would not be playing at that pace if Sigurdsson was in the middle, so your hypothetical query is a non-starter.

Those who have championed him (despite his obvious issues) will find it hard to admit they were wrong... I get that.

Jim Marray
43 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:01:25
Time to take Iwobi off and give Moise Kean a go. This might be the game he breaks his duck. And he is happy to be physical.
Jim Marray
45 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:24:44
Ciaran, and yet he has made the game safe. And from memory, backend of last season, he played well when we upped the tempo. Our problems last season and this are the tempo and, for some reason, until Silva is under threat, the tempo never improves.
Ernie Baywood
46 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:28:58
It's so simple. Play to your strengths. Not a midfield that gives you a slow build-up when you're picking a Number 10 and wingers. Completely negated the attributes in our attack.

Toss up between Gomes and Davies for MotM for me.

That makes it all the more frustrating that we've had to watch Silva picking Schneiderlin and Delph together.

Ernie Baywood
48 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:30:05
Ciaran, he's got quality. That game should never have been in the balance considering how much better we were. We wasted great opportunities all game.
Jay Wood

49 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:30:37
Gotta be happy with that.

WHU has been playing well, but we largely bossed them. Much more energetic and driving performance from Everton, evidently recognized and appreciated by the crowd.

It's that simple to get the support behind you.

So many more shots taken and on target. A couple rattling the woodwork. How the hell Mina's header was chalked off I don't know. Got to be good for Sigurdsson to get a goal also.

Much, much needed lift for all.

Ciarán McGlone
50 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:33:26
He's capable of individual brilliance. No one denies that – and it was inevitable he'd come on and score a cracker. However, it's clear from that match that we look a far better offensive unit without him.

Again, I get it – that some are not willing to let go of their 'superstar'.

Jamie Crowley
51 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:34:49
If you're not happy with that, you don't have a pulse.

Tom Davies - step the fuck up son!! What a brilliant game. Some of us believe in ya, kid!

MotM for me Iwobi. Completely changed the complexion of our side as the No 10.

It's not the formation, it's the players chosen inside of the formation and we need to play the ball through the middle more. We had the right players today, and thanks to Iwobi, we played the ball through the middle more.

Marco, take note. You're a bit dense and slow, sir, most of us saw this eons ago. Don't fuck this up.

Great game.

Jim Harrison
52 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:36:12
What a difference Gomes makes.

Silva hasnt helped himself at time this season, but in his defence there isn't another midfielder at the club who can replace Gomes. And as a result, coupled with the injuries to Delph and Gbamin and Gomes, there hasn't been a full-strength centre pairing all season.

Davies did well, fell a bit for Morgan as I think he has actually improved.

Can't see why the Mina goal was disallowed, but the ref made a couple of baffling calls.

All-in-all, a much rosier outlook.

George Cumiskey
53 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:36:34
Let's hope the penny has dropped with Silva, and he keeps Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin on the bench... surely he now knows it's all about speed going forward?
Paul McCoy
54 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:36:42
Much, much better from Everton today and as much as I though Iwobi did well, West Ham were leaving so much space in and around the box that a Sigurdsson goal was almost a certainty.

As others have said, we played with pace and with attacking intent today. Not sure how much of that was down to the benching of Sigurdsson or whether it was our two 'defensive' mids being Gomes and Davies.

Also, I've still no idea why Mina's goal was disallowed and I'd be very interested to find out why. Bet we never will though.

Jay Wood

55 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:37:24
You're right about Tom Davies, Jamie.

Wrong about Iwobi. Not out and out poor, but very peripheral.

The weakest of our starting XI on the day.

Steve Brown
56 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:39:35
19 shots, 10 on target, hit the woodwork twice, disallowed goal, crap ref... Iwobi dynamite in Number 10 role. Shows what happens when Silva picks a progressive line-up with pace!
Ernie Baywood
57 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:41:56
"Again, I get it - that some are not willing to let go of their 'superstar'."

How patronising is that? So dismissive of people who are talking about setup, tactics, quality, goalscoring.

I guess I could go with "some people are just so determined not to like the big money signing" but that would be unfairly demeaning as I'm sure your opinion is based on what you're seeing. As is mine, by the way.

Steve Brown
58 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:42:52
"Wrong about Iwobi. Not out and out poor, but very peripheral."

Haha, comedy gold. What game were you watching?'

James Gardner
59 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:43:40
Not to take anything away from the lads (you can only play what's in front of you) but I think West Ham travelled about as well as we usually do. They were very sloppy with their passing and there was not a lot of movement up top for them.

Having said that, I think we looked a lot more fluid going forward and interchanged really well. We looked more dangerous without Sigurdsson.

I thought we pressed them very well and didn't give them much time on the ball. Hopefully we can build on this next weekend!

George Cumiskey
60 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:45:40
What are you seeing in Sigurdsson, Ernie, that the rest of us aren't?
Steve Ferns
61 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:47:31
Great performance. Gomes the difference. We made a very good side look very poor.

Ballsy selection from Silva. It was win or bust. The lads played their hearts out for him. Bit nervy at the end until Sigurdsson came on and made sure...

Great to see Gomes getting the fans going at the end. More of the same against Brighton please.

Dave White
62 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:48:43
That's how we play! THAT'S HOW WE PLAY! I'm so happy I'm fucking dancing! One swallow does not a summer make but, fuck me, that performance has put me in a good mood! Tom Davies, take a bow, son. :)
Dave Ganley
63 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:50:38
Very good win today, should have been more but I'll take that. Just makes you wonder why they can't play with that intensity every week.

We need to be so much more clinical in front of goal, I hope that confidence will make that happen. The bar is set now so we can't dip below that level on the coming weeks. It will be interesting to see if silva sticks by a winning team.

As a side note, the referee was shocking.

Jamie Crowley
64 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:51:40
Jay Wood -

We 100% watched different games! ;0)

Iwobi was fantastic, and he completely changed our side. Speed moving foward, not afraid to take the space through the middle, superior vision, and did I say speed through the middle??

Man, we watched two different games. I thought he was superb.

Jay Wood

65 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:52:38
Steve @ 58.

I was watching the game.

How about you?

Ernie Baywood
66 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:53:21
Did you turn off before the 87th minute George?

He's not just good with the ball at his feet, he's brilliant.

Our challenge is to get the ball into him. What we've been doing is walking the ball up the pitch until there are 20 players in the opposition half. If you're going to do that then absolutely don't pick him. It would be pointless.

But if you're going to go forward quickly and find your number 10 in space then I'd pick him every time.

I'd also play Richarlison on the wing. And I'd have an easier time picking Kean.

This idea that Sig has been slowing our attacks is based on what? Any examples of flowing moves where he slowed the play down? They haven't been happening. Before today we've been playing most of our football between the back 6.

Jamie Crowley
67 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:57:43
Ernie -

Sigurdsson is a good player. Of that there's no question. But we were a changed side with Iwobi.

There's a place for Sigurdsson in the squad. I'm of the firm opinion he should be second choice.

Some of this bubbling argument that brewing – Sigurdsson or Iwobi? – is down to Marco.

After the second game, I screamed for Sigurdsson to be dropped. He wasn't performing. Competition for places raises everyone's game. Yet Marco just plodded on, as he usually does, and didn't effect change.

Had he dropped Gylfi back early in the season, when he deserved dropping, motivated him like he did today, we may not be having this conversation.

Dave White
68 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:57:55
I thought Iwobi showed a lot of promise. The ball got away from him (quite) a few times but you have to be there to receive the ball first. The whole team showed real appetite for the ball today.

Take a few risks, not always go safe and square. We have been dominating possession in every game but not translating it into chances. Apparently, the Hammers' keeper made more saves in a game than any other this season.

Grant Rorrison
70 Posted 19/10/2019 at 14:59:45
Good performance, decent result. Should have been more goals. Hopefully puts to bed the 'Moyes return' rumours.
Jamie Crowley
71 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:00:54
Exactly Dave @68.

The key to this whole thing, for me, is Iwobi and Davies in lieu of Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin.

The former play the ball forward, always look forward, and play to actually score and move it quickly.

The latter play sideways or wide continually, with little or no pace.

It changed our side, and I've been bleating on about it for weeks.

Phil Smith
72 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:01:13
Well, a long break helps us again. Remember last season? Looks like the penny has finally dropped for Silva with a bit of time for reflection.

One of Walcott's best games for us there. Thrilled with Beni on the bench too. More of the same next time, please. COYB!

Jay Wood

73 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:01:23
Can't agree with that assessment, Jamie.

The real thrust to the side today came from Tom Davies and Gomes. That's what kept us on the front foot. It actually broke down a lot around Iwobi.

Yes, he played in Bernard, Digne and Walcott quite nicely a couple of times, but he lost the ball cheaply a lot also, shies out of challenges, and a couple of times flung out his arms and spun around in frustration on losing the ball when it was still alive around him rather than fighting to reclaim it.

Like Davies in the first half, he should also have done better with the 1-on-1 with the keeper.

I like the lad. He has good technique. But there were ten players in front of him in the starting XI who merited the MotM performance you bestowed upon him more, in my opinion.

But the whole team stepped up today and I'm content with that.

Steve Ferns
74 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:02:15
Iwobi might not have had the perfect game but he made a difference. He helped us play faster. He's more mobile and got on the ball more and showed for passes more. His combinations were also better.

He should retain his place and the challenge is for Sigurdsson to improve and find his form. But he's scored a cracker and could have had another. I think he's up for that challenge.

Dave White
75 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:04:52
Davies looks to really have grown. I'll fully admit my concerns he looked destined for a Championship side, but I was so impressed with him today. You expect him to run his socks off, of course, but some of his passing was quality, quick balls looking to move the play up the pitch, superb.
Dave Lynch
76 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:06:53
Well, despite my doom and gloom outlook prior to the game... Where the fuck did that come from?

Atmosphere was brilliant, made better by about 6 Italians in sweat tops with Everton Italia on them being all Italian with there gestures and shouting.

Walcott was superb for me, never stopped running and never hid from the ball.

Please learn from that, Marco, and the same 11 at Brighton please.

Jay Wood

77 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:06:53
It wasn't Iwobi that made us play faster. As I said at half-time, that was primarily Tom Davies. Getting and giving the ball and moving it FORWARD in one move.

THAT is what primarily had us moving forward more rapidly in numbers today, not Iwobi. Iwobi was one of the beneficiaries of Tom Davies's play, not the instigator of the team's improved performance.

Ciarán McGlone
78 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:09:25

Sigurdsson needs a taxi to get from back to front and vice versa... to suggest he can played a part in a fast pace attacking game is frivolous and certainly doesn't take account of the evidence..

The evidence you ask? Every single game he's played for our club...

He can be individually brilliant but is nowhere near mobile enough for the exciting game we played today.

Eric Paul
79 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:10:06
Davies was MotM but Rice will get in the next England squad before him.
Jamie Crowley
80 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:10:24
Jay -

You’re 50% correct. 😜

How nice is it to argue who’s played better after a 2-0 dominating win?

Dave White
81 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:13:35
I will be going out to celebrate supporting a team I can be proud of shortly (I’d almost forgotten what that feels like!) but I must say how impressed I was with Walcott today. Long time since he showed what a player he can be like that.

To me that was a group of players playing for their manager, long may it continue!

Annika Herbert
82 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:15:32
Finally, a victory to celebrate and a Saturday evening to enjoy!! Credit to the players today, they looked a different team to what we have seen recently. I thought Tom Davies was immense.

Despite the fact I am one of his biggest critics, well done Sigurdsson, a quite sensational goal.

Sorry Ernie @66, you are seeing a totally different player to the one everyone else is seeing. Brilliant he most certainly isn't.

Let's hope Silva sticks with this line-up and let's hope this wasn't a one-off performance.

Jamie Crowley
83 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:16:15
First win in the Premier League since September 1st.

I forgot how good this feels.

Steve Ferns
84 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:17:01

Iwobi was getting into positions that Sigurdsson doesn't. Maybe you couldn't see that from your view. I could see the runs Iwobi was making.

I also watch Sigurdsson mark himself out of the game. Iwobi was much more available. He presented the options and Gomes and Davies the passes.

Jay Wood

85 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:19:16
It's not an argument, Jamie.

Just opinions.

Once again, the team and individuals have shown what they are capable of. If we'd have played like that since the opening day we would be sitting 3rd or 4th.

The debate about Marco Silva's tactics, selections, motivational skills, whatever, will not abate unless and until he starts producing performances and results like today on a more consistent basis, whilst suffering only isolated defeats rather than 6-8-10 game winless runs.

And one thing he should do to help the team and himself now is believe in Tom Davies again and give him a good run in the side.

He was that important to us today.

Jamie Crowley
86 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:21:26
I'd define a difference of opinions as a friendly argument - which is entirely different from an unfriendly argument.

Your mileage may vary.

I agree with every single other assessment you pose. Including, and especially, where our position in the table would be presently, had Marco not dithered.


Dave White
87 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:21:42
And if that's how Siggy reacts when he's dropped, I say bench him every week!
Rob Marsh
88 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:24:04
Jay Wood #85,

Good post.

I agree, it should not take such a long and pathetic run of losses to get Silve to change system and personnel.

Kieran Kinsella
89 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:24:08
Sigurdsson may well be best deployed as an impact sub going forward. Sure, he may not like that limited role but, in the last 20 minutes, tired defenders leave space which is ideal for him to exploit with his long-range shooting.
Christy Ring
90 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:24:17
Gomes and Davies outstanding today.

What I find unbelievable is, why Silva has ignored Davies until now? I hope he finally sees that two holding midfielders doesn't work.

As for Schneiderlin, glad he was dropped, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Beni was on the bench because he had an injury.

Alan J Thompson
91 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:27:23
First half, we had a midfield that was going forward together but Silva couldn't help himself and had Davies more anchored in our half as a defensive midfielder in the second half and all the more simple balls that gave everyone time disappeared.

For me, it was a game won in spite of the manager rather than because of him.

Jamie Crowley
92 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:27:56
Christy -

I saw two holding midfielders today.

Davies sat deep, very deep, for most of the game. Gomes got forward, but his number one priority was to protect. Davies sat, Gomes was more box-to-box, but with a priority to defend / hold.

The 4-2-3-1 was implemented to perfection today. The correct players in the correct positions, moving the ball forward quickly and looking to attack, with two holding mids protecting that clean sheet first and foremost.

Trevor Peers
93 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:28:32
Silva should've dropped Sigurdsson a while back, he needs to find the correct position for him, he's too good not to be involved though. Perhaps he could be used further back in the Gomes role.

The No 10 position seems to be redundant in modern football. Sigurdsson always offers a goal threat when he's confidence is high. Great strike by the way. Changing the team seemed to give us more options through the middle for the first time this season we actually looked like scoring.

Steve Ferns
94 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:29:09
Christy, we didn’t play Davies any further forward than Delph would have played. It’s just that Tom is more forward thinking. He gives the ball away, yes, but he also looks to always get it forwards.
Jay Wood

95 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:31:00
A match goer always has the advantage over the sofa spectator in that you have the wider peripheral vision, Steve.

But I would counter your claim about Iwobi taking up better positions than Sigurdsson (who you claim 'marks himself out of the game') with the obvious response.

We haven't played with anywhere near that level of intensity all season as we saw today. Ergo, it has been incredibly easy for the opposition to crowd out Siggy and put 2-3 players on the team's most creative player, so ponderous has been our approach play. A player of his experience, vision and capability would never 'mark himself out of the game' as you glibly describe.

It was Tom Davies's consistent receiving and instant moving of the ball FORWARD that gave the likes of Bernard, Walcott and Richarlison more space and time in which to attack a turning and retreating defence. Iwobi was another beneficiary of this, but a lot broke down around him. It's to be expected. The opposition works hard to do just that.

Iwobi is a clever footballer. I expect Iwobi to improve in that role, given more opportunities. But the finished article, or even MotM today? Not even close.

Kieran Kinsella
96 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:31:47

I think Tom's situation is interesting. I think like JJK, Rich and Iwobi, even, that he's a bit hit and miss and Silva doesn't wholly trust him. That is partially down to youth and inexperience IMHO. If they get more game time, they hopefully mature and improve. The question is, does Silva give them that opportunity or take the "safer" option of older but less dynamic players? It's a similar quandary to the style question. Do you play safe AKA Fat Sam, or do you roll the dice AKA Bobby? The latter has more potential upside but also greater risk.

Tony Everan
97 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:33:09
Team had better balance today with the changes made. As has been said , Tom's forward thinking makes a big difference to that formation. We can get better than that too. Thank God Marco saw the light at last, better late than never.

Can we build on that ? I don't see why not, another performance like that against Brighton next weekend will result in a win.

Steve Brown
98 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:34:13
Jay @ 65, I agree Davies and Gomes played well. I have been asking for Tom to play for weeks. But the player who enabled the rapid transitions from midfield to the forward three was Iwobi. He was pacey and accurate with his passing. He influenced the game more than I have seen Sigurdsson do all season.

Fair play to Sigurdsson on his spectacular goal. He does however slow down the speed of our counter-attacks

Jamie Crowley
99 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:34:14
Jay -

Despite our differing opinions, you've absolutely nailed something.

Davies was superb. And he absolutely changed the complexion of the team. Every ball, when he won possession, which he did often enough and very well today, he looked forward. He was immense.

And it is a massive difference with him out there, instead of Schneiderlin playing it sideways.

We're more on the same page methinks, with a small disagreement about the impact of Iwobe.

Davies was just fantastic today. Brilliant.

Ross Edwards
100 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:36:18
Excellent performance today from start to finish. Silva made all the changes I wanted him to make, dropping the likes of Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin and playing Iwobi through the middle with genuine pace and balance throughout the side.

Every time we went forward we looked like scoring and its been some time since we said that.

He’s found a balance and a formula that worked to perfection, I just hope he sticks to it.

Steve Brown
101 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:36:28
"Gylfi Sigurdsson gets Marco Silva's message as imperious Alex Iwobi transforms Everton's attack."

I think the newspapers agree that Iwobi did okay...

Steve Ferns
102 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:37:19
The intensity has been there this season in a few games but not enough. For example Bournemouth. The problem has been our fragility and how easy it is for teams to knock us out of our stride.

Silva backed himself into the corner. He had to win. He picked a team that was win or lose. I imagine he also told the players that he could not lose. Nothing but a win would be enough. The players went out and played for him. They gave him everything. That’s something that’s hard to deliver consistently. The players were absolutely knackered. You could see how they were all getting water every stoppage.

For once they can look the manager in the eye and say they carried out their jobs to the best of their ability.

Tony Hill
103 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:38:37
West Ham were appalling but we played well. Davies was excellent in his calmness and touch; a word too for Sidibe who I thought looked very strong and incisive.

What we must not do is celebrate this result for very long. It is a tiny improvement and a baby step forward.

I still think Silva can have us playing some fantastic football though, if we do the hard things well enough and for long enough.

Conor Skelly
104 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:40:04
The point about Iwobi was that he moves with the ball quicker than Sigurdsson, is more unpredictable and can play effectively all across the front three.

Today the team benefited from a positive midfield with Tom Davies and Andre provoding a quick and creative platform.

Playing Richarlison up top encouraged the positive play. Having a hopeless centre-forward kills a team's morale.

Special mention to Kean who played a big part in the lead up to Gylfi's sublime goal.

Big decision for Manager to make next week regarding Sigurdsson now. Marco should keep him in the bench again but does he have the bottle.

John Pierce
105 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:40:09
There is a huge amount to be happy about today. The five changes, three enforced due to due injury and suspension, the others dropped gave the side more energy and dynamism. Question; had Schniederlin and Delph been fit would Silva have picked Davies and Gomes?! Fate eh?

The first half was excellent. Iwobi between the lines both receiving the ball and carrying it. He created so much space for others to find. This was aided by Richarlison who often was a false nine, running in to out taking a player with him and gave Iwobi even more space.

Davies & Gomes didn’t sit they played higher and squeezed the ball, any won possession meant all four forward players were close by and easy to find, often picking the loose ball up just from challenges. Davies in particular looked forward and was very good.

The link restored between Bernard & Digne gave us a different dimension, Sidibe’s range of passing is far superior to that of Coleman’s.

None of this matter if you play at a snails pace, in the first half we didn’t, good tempo and ball pace, 2/3-0 would not have flattered us.

Davies yellow card was dumb, he is always less of a player on a yellow, his game of mark and pinch, neutered. He was a passenger in the second half. The effect was clear. We lost the tempo and pace and the game was more open and far less structured unlike the first half.

I was pretty annoy that Silva stood and did nothing as minutes 50, 60 and 70 ticked by.

Sure we had chances but several players faded out of the game. Walcott and Davies the two I would have hooked.

It gave West ham a sniff and not for a great save from an otherwise unemployed Pickford we’d have ceded the lead.

Thankfully a great strike settled it, a goal borne out of space time and West Ham trying to get an equalizer.

A welcome result, pace and tempo will wins you games. The second was allowed to drift and the lack of changes compounded it. Will Marco stick with that team?

Steve Ferns
106 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:41:06
Tony, Sidibe was a major factor. If only players had looked right more often and seen the space he was in. Maybe they aren’t used to the right back getting forwards so fast.

I hope he retains his position and can put that silly rumour to bed.

Charles McCann
107 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:41:34
On the whole a really great performance today full of energy and High intensity work rate.

The biggest factor for me was not having Sneiderlinn on the field today. Having two dynamic midfielders in Gomes and Davies who have the courage to go forward with the ball changed the whole complexion of how we played. They both, along with the four defenders were immense. Bernard the wee magician did well along with Richarlison up front who ran his socks off! Iwobi and Walcott did well at times. Both of them did some real good things but also some poor things too.

Overall much improved performance and well done Silva for finally realising our weaknesses and addressing them. You took your time!

Think Silva needs to rotate his squad better. A couple of matches rest might reinvigorate siggy and Seamus. I think both players still will play a big role in the season but maybe not always starting. God that match today put a smile on my face! It’s been a while but the joy in seeing siggys goal go in! Beautiful strike : )

Steve Ferns
108 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:43:40
John, you are right that Richarlison often drifted to his left, but that’s not what a false 9 does. He definitely did not play as a false 9. He linked up well with Iwobi though.
Jamie Crowley
109 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:46:18
The biggest factor for me was not having Sneiderlinn on the field today

That ^^

It's not nice to say, but we are an entirely different team, and a better team, without Morgan in the side.

Raymond Fox
110 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:47:43
Hallelujah it will be a pleasure to watch MOT for a change.

Well done Silva, I wasn't confinced he would change the team around so credit where its due it paid off.
Also good to see the players performing like it meant something.

Mike Dolan
111 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:48:20
I thought we were brilliant today easily the best game of the season. Gomes did everything in midfield but the energy that Davies brings was key. Nice to see Siggy smack in a cracker. I’ve been watching the debate over Siggy with interest, probably alone in thinking this but as the man is a brilliant footballer who reads the game well and only lacks speed does anyone out there think that he would be most effective as the more defensive midfielder breaking up play and spraying balls around from the back. Gomes Davies and Siggy with Iwobi the 10.
Kunal Desai
112 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:49:39
Were the players finally playing for Silva, knowing that this could have been his last game? Good to see Silva finally change it and pair Gomes and Davies in midfield. I'd like to see this partnership given a run of games. Best performance since the Man Utd game.
Important now to take this performance away to Brighton next week. Show this level or performance and we win otherwise this result is meaningless. The away form needs to improve now, performances to date have been abysmal.
Steve Ferns
113 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:55:08
Mike, you’re not alone. The other mike, Gaynes, thinks so too. I can’t see it myself. I don’t think he dominates the game, like Gomes did today. That’s my criticism of Sigurdsson. He doesn’t impose himself on the game by demanding the ball, getting on the ball and making things happen.

Sigurdsson is a fantastic footballer and he showed that with his goal. Let’s hope he can be reinvigorated.

Anthony Jones
114 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:55:27
Iwobi may be a rough diamond but we were a different team because of him.

Silva's season depends on him reading this website.

Tom Bowers
115 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:55:57
We have beaten the three W's all at Goodison but we have to springboard forward from today and get some decent results together.
Some things still to be improved but an all around better display.
Nice to be able to bring players of the bench to finish them off.
Ernie Baywood
116 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:57:16
And that again from me, Jamie.

I'll disagree with a host of people over Sig (no, not all, Annika) but I doubt anyone fails to see improvement as a result of Schneiderlin not being there.

Given our formation, he's a hindrance. Gets in the way. Slows us down. I'd rather play with 10 men.

Paul Jones
117 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:57:34
Perversely, I believe that today's result proves that Silva isn't the man to manage to Everton.

Just analyse what he did - he only changed the personnel and tactics to reflect the side that many Evertonians - including many on this forum - have been crying out for for weeks.

None of us are experts, and none of us are taking a sizeable wedge home every week for steering the club in the right direction. But it's his job to do so. And if his thinking is lagging behind that of the fan base, and he's too stubborn or lacking in ideas to make things work, then he shouldn't be here.

Steve Ferns
118 Posted 19/10/2019 at 15:59:03
Kunal, potter likes Brighton to play out from the back. If they do so, we can get at them. We can win that game. If we then beat Watford, the season is not quite saved, or back on track, but it’s not dead.

We’re not far back either. What’s that 4 off 4th before the 3.00pms, and the results going ok for us so far.

We need to get a run going and we can climb the table and get back to where we expected us to be.

Ernie Baywood
119 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:02:23
I agree, Paul 117. He's been far too slow to see the obvious.

That said...

We've all watched more Everton games than he has. I've watched most of these players more than he has.

In any other industry, people who spend this much time viewing, analysing and discussing a topic would quite rightly be considered expert.

Jamie Crowley
120 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:06:10
Steve and Paul both @118 and 117 -

The real proof will be who Marco selects moving forward.

If he stays with this more dynamic, attacking, faster lineup, we stand a chance of forgiveness, and righting the ship.

If he reverts to type, it'll be a crucifixion.

And can we really forgive him for squandering so many possible points in a relatively easy schedule and start?

Not yet, for me.

If Schneiderlin comes in, or Sigurdsson starts next week and Iwobe is on the bench, or Bernard not playing? Then Marco is clearly delusional. If he isn't already. And if he benches Davies, he should be drawn and quartered.

As John Pierce pointed out, did Marco actually make the changes, or were they forced on him? Next week's starting lineup will go a long way to answering that crucial question.

Kunal Desai
121 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:10:16
Agreed Steve. I resist tinkering with the side or the formation. Lets get some consistency going like we did back end of last season. Some players clearly going to have to up their games if they are to get back into the side. We must improve the away form, 3 points is a must.
Steve Ferns
122 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:10:51
Jamie, we are now only 2 points back on last seasons results. If we reverse the Brighton defeat from last season, we’d actually be one point up on last season. Look at other teams results, and indeed the scores right now, and you’ll see that this season is a lot more competitive than last. We haven’t squandered points. It’s a tough league and it’s hard to win even the “easy games”.
Bill Gall
123 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:14:02
Well the manager done what a lot of supporters asked and that was dropping some under performers and making changes due ti injuries, overall this produced a good team performance supported by a couple of good individual performances.

One good game is not going to gloss over the previous poor performances, and the next couple of games should show if the improvements today will continue.

Tony Hill
124 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:18:11
Gomes's ability to hold off opposing players in confined space and his control in those situations are uncanny - when he's in form. He's such an elegant, Evertonian player. He got better and better today as the game went on.

God it's good to win, and it's so wonderful to see that the players tried so hard today. Of course, that should be the minimum expectation but I was worried they'd given up on Silva. There's still lots to play for this season.

Kieran Kinsella
125 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:19:48

"we are now only 2 points back on last seasons results." That isn't much of an argument. We were 11th in the table, AKA bottom half after 8 games last year. Now we are "just" two points off that unsatisfactory position.

True, it's a difficult league and you get some funny results. But, the top 6 pretty much always end up being the top 6. Then other "middling" teams seem to have their year here and there e.g. Leicester won the league, Burnley 7th. Everton never seem to have "their day" though. At least not since 2004. I look at it like you're in school. It's easy to get a C and say "half the other kids didn't do their homework either." But that isn't really a great mentality to have in life.

Steve Ferns
126 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:20:40
Spot on Tony. I thought he was a little rusty though and didn’t play at his best, but it was enough to make a big difference, especially when combined with Davies. Let’s not forget that they also had to keep an impressive West Ham midfield quiet.
David Pearl
127 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:22:57
I think without Schneiderlin and two midfielders looking to drive forward, we needed Keane and Mina to read the play and step into the midfield. Against a better team that could haunt us. Worked very well today but was a relief when the second goal went in. Unbelievable miss from Davies and to a lesser extent Iwobi. I've no doubt Siggy could play the role as effectively as Iwobi but that shows we have a squad.

Walcott was my motm and looked dangerous and capable everytime he had the ball. I would of made a couple different subs but Silva got the response he needed from the off. Another good thing to see was Sidibe, very good with his passing and positioning.

So now its on to the next game... this can't be a one off!

Jamie Crowley
128 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:24:12
I'm with Kieran, Steve.

To compare our position v last season isn't exactly in keeping with our motto.

Last season was dogshit. I don't care at all where we are v last season.

I will readily admit it's an odd, tough league this season. Nothing is really going to type, sans the top 2 clubs. And the less spoke about that, the better.

Steve Ferns
129 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:25:21
Kieran, 2 points off the results against the same teams we played from last season and substituting the bottom three with the promoted three in order. As Mr Keatings likes to do. I always liked to look at his table as a guide, but ToffeeWeb dropped it so I keep my own score now.

I ain’t saying we’re doing well, or even ok. It’s just not quite as bad as some make out. Don’t forget to maintain what we have on this table we need to beat Man Utd, Chelsea and Arsenal, which means we need to be a lot better. A lot, lot better.

The season is still young and we can still turn things around. We need to put a lot of wins on the board quickly though.

Dave Williams
130 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:26:32
We looked a different team today. Sidibé was good, Gomes got stronger as the game went on and was superb- how we have missed him! Tom was excellent and the chap who posted that he was a passenger after his yellow card must have watched with his eyes closed. Tom had possibly his best game for us and looks a lot stronger than last season. I thought Iwobi was very good. Yes he loses possession or passes to the opposition but only because he tries the clever through ball rather than pass sideways or back. There’s more to come from him.
I’m no fan of Theo and was disappointed to see him selected but my god the lad played well. Deserved a goal,worked his socks off and looked very dangerous throughout. Great goal from Bernard who played well.
I do hope Siggy doesn’t get back in just for scoring a goal. He is too slow for this style of play and Iwobi offers so much more.
Oh, and Yerry had another excellent game- just hope his injury isn’t serious.
Huge improvement which gives Silva something to work on but he must keep Sidibé,Iwobi, Davies and Gomes in the team.
Paul Kelly
131 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:27:29
Fooking get in there, splendid display compared to the shite we've been served up previously. I'll may get to the nitty gritty later, but right now I'm still riding on a crest of a wave.

Great performance. Inspiring, more of the same in the future please. 5 egg omellete coming up (take note JC).

Ray Roche
132 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:29:06
The only downside for me today was Richarlison diving. Pretending to be hurt. Ok, lots of players do it but I hate it. Don’t want it at Everton.
Christy Ring
133 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:29:11
It’s not that the players played for Silva today, he picked a more balanced team, who like to play attacking football, instead of the slow pedestrian game. A few comments from Steve and Jamie, saying we still had two holding midfielders, the difference with Davies and Gomes, they played further forward,, quick and forward passing, unlike Schneiderlin and Delph who were so deep and passed the ball sideways and backwards.
Steve Ferns
134 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:29:39
Jamie, I want the best. The very best. I ain’t aiming for 7th. I want to win the league. I think we should aim to win the league every season. We have to be realistic and accept that our resources (and FFP) make this very difficult. So instead I’d like to see progression towards this aim. My target for the season is 65 points. I don’t care about position, unless we have a chance of top 4, I want to see our point total increase year on year until we can achieve the ultimate goal.
Jamie Crowley
135 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:32:34
Steve Ferns -

I know you want the best. Of that there's no question in my mind.

Paul Kelly -

Two fried eggs with a bagel today. Performance deserved a 5 egg badmotherfucker omlette to be sure!

Ian Bennett
136 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:33:26
Wasn't sure about Walcott starting today, but can't knock the selection. Sidibe gave us more something on the right, whilst Iwobi although frustrating makes us a quicker team instead of Sigurdsson.

I like Richarlison upfront. It keeps him in the game more, and I like Bernard on the left.

Sam Hoare
137 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:36:35
Much, much better.

I said when we bought him that Iwobi might well play centrally and it seemed to work much better today. Some much needed mobility and energy in the middle.

Tony Hill
138 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:37:05
Yes David @127 and Dave @130, I thought Walcott was vey good. Made the incision for the first goal, hit the bar and worked well defensively. If we can get him firing again then it's a major bonus. Yes, I know the odds are against.
Steve Ferns
139 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:38:02
Sam, I’d never watched him closely enough to think he could do the job. You look to be right about that and he seems much better than I thought he was.
Joe McMahon
140 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:43:01
Guys, I didn't see the game, so how did Gomes perform? Also those that went, do you think Keen uptop would work?
John Pierce
141 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:54:13
Steve 108. Yes you’re right, I couldn’t really find the right term for what he was doing.

He was bending his runs like a ‘U’ from in to out, often at full tilt as he finished the upstroke in the channel. It better played to his skill of strength and running rather than trying to play it into him where he often gets embroiled in contact. Most of the balls were on the floor too, a welcome nuance.

Kieran Kinsella
142 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:56:35
Steve Ferns

" It’s just not quite as bad as some make out." That I agree is a fair point. In the grand scheme of things it never is "as bad" as nut cases on here, myself included make out. But that's football fans for you.

Ian Linn
143 Posted 19/10/2019 at 16:57:26
We're always a better side when Bernard plays
Brian Hennessy
144 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:00:06
Joe, Gomes was outstanding and given MOTM on BT Sport.

What impressed me most about him today was how he physically dominated the midfield. We all know he has a great range of passing but he won a lot of 50/50 balls today and West Ham just couldn't handle him.

John Pierce
145 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:00:17
Dave Williams - can you point to any thing Tom did in the second half? One very good block at the park end aside he sat 10 yards deeper, sat off players and gave West ham more space in midfield.
He hardly attempted to pinch the ball or squeeze the play - a key facet of our superb play in the first half.
Either playing to instructions or as I believe neutered by the card he was nowhere near as effective.
As a result we couldn’t pen West ham in their half and our attacking patterns of play fell away.
He should have been subbed and the replacement could step up and squeeze without the burden of the card.
John Pierce
146 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:05:10
Christy - 133. 100% with that comment.
Brent Stephens
147 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:06:33
Mina was immense in my eyes. Interestingly John Stones can't even get a starting place for Man City with all the back-line problems they've got.
Ray Roche
148 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:06:59
Incidentally, VAR! Watford SHOULD have had a penalty and Spurs were given a dodgy goal. And we were robbed again. By VAR.
And Burnley robbed too.
Jerome Shields
149 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:07:37
I now definitely think that the big change in Everton today was , at last , mobility and swift interlinking play in the midfield, by the selection of players who could implement such play and a higher percentage of attacking play through the centre. The intensity of pressing was also higher as a result.

There are still questions regarding the mobility in regard to the two centre backs and their distribution, and forward finishing. But hopefully this can be improved on. Pickford needs to improve his concentration, the cross field pass from the left edge of his penalty area that hit Keane, was a real no no.

In my opinion the midfield and attack playing this way , allowed players to play to their strengths. Of course West Ham have a open style of play, which did help, but Everton do have the players, who when playing at their best can unlock setup shop teams.

Silva has to now push on from here and keep the team improving and set the necessary standards at Finch Farm. Hopefully internal changes at Everton will also gather pace. .

David Pearl
150 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:07:51
Paul, isn't a 5 egg omelette a tortilla?

Tony, Walcott was better today and found himself setting up wide right but seemed to play with more freedom. Good to see him playing closer to the striker and in the middle. Not so good to see Richarlison greedily go for goal a couple times, then again he is wasted out wide.

Much better balance today and l admit, baring some sloppy early passes Gomes and Davies had more energy and drive. I hope Silva keeps the same team next game. We have good players, a good squad. Lets give Kean the time he needs.

And by the way... 4 losses in a row is bad. Maybe not as bad as 5... but its bad enough and can't be repeated.

Kieran Kinsella
151 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:07:51
McNulty on BBC has Walcott as MOTM, BT sports have Gomes, others saying Iwobi. The variety of answers suggests it was good overall team performance
Ray Roche
152 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:09:11
Brent, Stones is just coming back from injury.
Steve Ferns
153 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:12:16
John, I don’t think there is a label for it. He naturally gravitates to the inside forward position. I think he’s best played on the left of a front three, as opposed to left wing in a 4231. He showed a lot today as a lone striker though.
Steve Ferns
154 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:15:13
Kieran, keep getting carried away. If you don’t then you just don’t care enough.

Brian, I would also add that he showed a “quiet” leadership. He communicated with others frequently (during stoppages for example) and forced his will on the game.

He’s a massive favourite of silva and is the one who makes the team play the way silva wants them to play. Which is how they played today. That’s faster more direct football, not the side to side stuff.

Dave Williams
155 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:16:37
John- I thought Tom was every bit as effective after the card as he was before. Yes he sat back a bit more but I would think that was Silva wanting to safeguard the one goal lead rather than Tom taking his foot off the gas.
If it had been the latter Silva would surely have subbed him rather than leaving him on for the whole game and nominated by quite a few for MOTD.
Tony Abrahams
156 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:19:32
I looked up at Howard Kendall, whilst I was waiting for my brother and son, and asked him to look down on and give Marco Silva, some help.

I’m sure We all do things like this when it comes to our team, but nobody faced more pressure than Howard, who then went on to give me my best days following Everton.

Everyone has got opinions, it’s what makes the game so great, but leaving Goodison today, my little godson said Gomes was motm, and this fella walking down the street, said good choice son, he was brilliant.

I wouldn’t have had him in my top 3, is what I said, but that was the beauty about today, because for the first time this season, a much higher percentage of the players played well, rather than didn’t play well, and wasn’t it a lot more enjoyable to watch?

Another fella, made the best point though, “he said we looked a much better team- even though we were very wasteful in very good positions at times- but let’s see if the players that played today, can now start to gel- and I couldn’t have agreed with him any more.

Tony Hill
157 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:20:24
Brent @147, he was mate. I'm hoping his limping off was just because he fancied a bit of acclaim. I think this fella's going to become an Everton hero, I sense he loves it here and we love him. He's improving all the time as well, he's got a way to go before he achieves his potential.

People like Darren Hind have made valid criticisms of the lad but I think he'll do us proud in the end.

Brian Williams
158 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:22:52
Good points Tony. I said to my match going mates "When we learn to finish some team's in for a real hiding."
Five nil wouldn't have flattered us today.
Steve Ferns
159 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:23:10
Spot on Tony A. Have a good night today. I hope your Dad enjoyed that performance.
Stan Schofield
160 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:24:14
If we could put in that kind of performance regularly we'd take most teams apart. That's the frustration, the fact that we can do it, like we could last season, but it comes in fits and starts. Let's hope, like last season, that following the International break we've kickstarted some consistency.

The goals were brilliant individual efforts. Bernard is a class act, as is Gylfi in a number of respects.

Brent Stephens
161 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:25:52
Tony #157 I think Mina is often also covering for Keane's lack of positional awareness. Several times today in fact.
Dave Abrahams
162 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:25:54
Made up with the win, even better that we played better than we have all season.

Thought Gomes was MOTM by far Davies was good especially passing forward, lots of times not even stopping the ball but quickly moving it forward.

Much better, we deserved to win by more than the two, and that really was the only thing wrong, my heart was always in my mouth because we only led by one goal until the very end.

Jay Wood, agree with you entirely over Iwobi, I think he shirks the hard physical part of the game, does a lot of bluff work, running hard at back passes which almost most of the time is wasted effort but looks good, he never puts a good hard tackle in and shied away from at least four confrontations with opposing players, noticed this deficiency in past games, confirmed it for me today, pure and simple he lacks bottle, to me anyway.

Dave Williams
163 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:29:04
Worth saying that the crowd was good today. Plenty of encouragement no doubt sparked at least in part by the increase in energy and tempo and the clear fact that the players were giving their all with no malingerers.
Steve Ferns
164 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:38:46
Tony H. I’m afraid Mina might have a more serious injury than you think. He was holding the back of his leg so it wasn’t cramp. He looked like he had a twinge and was limping around for a few minutes before he came off. It looked like he was doing anything not to come off.

Hopefully it’s just a dead leg or something and nothing more than that. He was immense today and gets better every game. I also think he can be the leader we need at the back. He certainly has the personality.

Brent Stephens
165 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:39:36
Iwobi had some good touches but I thought he lost possession too often by overrunning the ball. And offered little in trying to regain possession or stop the West Ham advancing - looked slow and scared in the challenge. But I'd stick with him in that position.
Jer Kiernan
166 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:40:16
Was delighted with the performance today, however it also holds up a mirror to just how much this team have been under performing this season

We stood on WH today and bar some awful refering decision would have scored 4, and our squad should be beating WHU at goodison, My fear is that today the team where playing to save the managers job, will we be back to the same pedestrian stuff in a months time ? I hope not, Walcott was great today but he is finished

I don't think Silva will be here long term however I did vote in the TW poll to give him till Xmas, But today was good and I really enjoyed it, the fans were excellent also any doubts that a "lack of atmosphere" is the issue is bollox the team need to get the supporters onside as they very much did today

The effort and endevour shown today should be the minimum expected

Tony Hill
167 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:44:17
Steve @164, Silva says it's a knee thing which he hopes isn't significant. Please God it isn't.
Ray Roche
168 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:44:17
Jer, maybe Walcott’s performance today shows he’s NOT finished.
Gavin Johnson
169 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:49:31
A lot, lot better having Gylfi as our new impact sub! lol. I hope Silva is brave enough to keep Iwobi centrally.
Jay Tee
170 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:52:35
Well, I have moaned about Walcott since he came to Goodison but he had a reasonable game today. So well done to him. He could have had a hatrick if he was able to finish properly. Especially the one he should have shot using his left foot but tried to control it with his right.

Better game all round but can they keep it up?

Jer Kiernan
171 Posted 19/10/2019 at 17:55:19
I don't think he has enough to offer anymore he certainly not going to get any quicker, Looking at the bigger picuture despite a great peformance today, his scoring/assist record since arriving per minutes played doesnt fit with a team with European aspirations

Had he been performing to same level at one of the Top 6 I reckon he would have been shipped by now

Ray Roche
173 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:00:43
Jer can’t argue about the top6 comments but we are a mile off top6 and his performance today was top drawer.
Stan Schofield
174 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:03:02
Jay@170: When Allardyce signed Walcott two seasons ago, he was one of our best players. His form dipped last season. Let's hope it's returned.
Jer Kiernan
175 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:04:56
We shouldnt be a mile of Top6 is the point we played a team with genuine Top 6 aspirations off the park today

Anyways best not focus on the negatives nice to enjoy a good performance today for the 1st time this season, long may Walcotts golden run continue ;)

All the best

Kase Chow
176 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:07:26
Great win - really really pleased with that

Pickford 8 for the vital save

Sidibe 8 did well at the back and supported the attack. Gotta start ahead of Coleman
Digne 6 crosses not great and they managed to make some headway on the left
Keane & Mina 8 both Dominant - rly good as a pair

Gomes 9 brilliant performance - ran the show. If he can add consistency and goals he’ll be the all round midfielder
Bernard 7 lucky with his goal. Got involved but avoids shooting when there’s a chance
Iwobi 8 kept us moving forward with incisive passes. Should have scored tho
Walcott 7 did quite well but didn’t maximise opportunities. And there were a few
Davies 8 excellent match. Played the role rly well. Very impressive. Deserves more chances

Richarlison 6 didn’t really influence the match. Striker isn’t his position

Paul Tran
177 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:07:36
Didn't see the game today, but from what I heard (I was listening), an excellent performance with some heart, pace and passion. Hats off to Silva and the players. Let's make that performance the standard and see if we can keep this side together for a few games to develop some understanding and consistency.
Tony Hill
178 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:07:45
Good to see one of my favourites, Baningime, among the subs. That young man is going to be a top player for someone. I hope it's us.
John Keating
179 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:08:43
Can't argue with that really.
We really needed that win and more importantly a clean sheet.
When the team was announced before the game there seemed to be a hush in the pub, seemed to last 10 minutes, probably a few seconds.
Most including myself wanted as much deadwood out and that included Walcott so seeing him in and Richie up top stopped a few.
Actually the team was far more balanced when we kicked off. Iwobi, Gomes and Davies all did well and tried to look for the forward pass at every opportunity - what a change!
Walcott was excellent and well deserving his place
Richie did well against the 2 centre halves though I wish he'd cut out the diving and play acting.

Trying not to take too much away from us I was quite surprised how poor West Ham were, glad but surprised!
They showed nothing going forward but could have changed the game had their attempt from their corner gone in. Ii looked as if Silva changed the marking from their couple of corners from the daft zonal to a more man for man. Still caused chaos from the first one but we were due a bit of luck.

Silva still has a way to go and I still have my doubts.
Todays efforts should be the absolute minimum we should expect from both him and the team
Good result.

Brent Stephens
180 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:12:30
Tony #178 my thoughts on and hopes for Beni as well. Coming good after his injury lay off.
Tony Abrahams
181 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:21:58
Walcott, only gets on peoples nerves because everyone can see that he would be one of the most influential players at our club, if he showed more heart and bravery, which definitely undermines his obvious ability?

I can see both sides of the Iwobi argument, so let’s see how he develops playing in the middle of the pitch, whilst not forgetting that it’s a squad game nowadays?

Trevor Peers
182 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:22:29
Plenty of effort and a good tempo saw us win this one, I said yesterday that whoever scored the first goal would go on to win what was in the end an easy victory.
The questions about Silva don't suddenly go away though, we'll see if he can string a run of results together as easily as he strings a run of losses.
Steve Ferns
183 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:30:13
Certainly not Trevor. It eases the pressure a little. It will all come back and then some of he lost the next two.

Tony H and Brent, he was fit last season but his championship club just didn’t fancy him. I also thought he looked a player, but perhaps not as lofty hopes as you two. It bamboozled me as to what happened to him since San Allardyce left. Unsworth picked him and said he was too good for the u23 level so it seems he still believes in him.

Also worth noting that silva went with Baningime and not Denis Adendorin, as the latter has been in the first team squad all season. Also note that both played for the u23s last night.

Christy Ring
184 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:31:16
Jer@166 A great performance but I disagree with your assessment that the players were playing to save the manager job, and back to pedestrian football in a months time. Silva picked a team with balance, and who wanted to play football, with Gomes and Davies driving us forward, and Bernard and Iwobi who he normally drops allowed to play with freedom. The only way we’ll go back to pedestrian football, if Silva goes back to his tried and trusted, Schneiderlin & co.
Ed Prytherch
185 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:36:48
Mina was my MOM, the complete center half but he was overshadowed by partnerships. Digne and Bernard, Davies and Gomes, Iwobi and Richarlison. In each case the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. It was so good to see us move the ball forward quickly, even at the end when we could have been slowing it down to play out the clock we went forward and got the deserved second goal. But it could easily have been five.

VAR is a farce. It is used to disallow goals but never to award them.

Martin Berry
186 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:42:54
A brilliant performance and the energy of Gomes and Davies in midfield inspired some lovely attacking football which should have produced more goals.
Lets hope that Silva keeps his nerve and sends out the same starting 11 next up ?
Filipe Torres
187 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:47:03
oh dear! another false dawn.
Silva's changes, allthough appreciated, only solved half the problem(the attacking one).
I tell ya that this wont work against brighton.
Christy Ring
188 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:49:36
Tony and Brett I was delighted and surprised to see Beni on the bench today, I don’t know what happened at Wigan last season, but Unsy said he’s back to his best with the u23s, so hope he can make the next level with us in a position we are lacking. I’m still sceptical why Silva hadn’t Schneiderlin on the bench
Mark Frere
189 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:50:50
A very pleasing performance, full of energy and quick passing. More of the same please!

My only gripe is, we need to be much more ruthless when we're dominating the opposition. It was always a bit tense right up until when Siggy scored the second goal.

Also, another big concern that didn't seem to be eradicated today was our vulnerability from corners/set-pieces. We nearly conceded from a corner when two West Ham players were left unmarked and Pickford had to pull off a good save. It was easy an chance for West Ham and one you'd expect them to score but the shot was too close to Pickford. That could quite easily have cost us three points. Marco needs to drop this zonal marking as it will continue to cost us points over the course of the season. Many teams in the PL use zonal marking effectively... but Silva's version of it has proved to be hugely problematic in his time here.

Filipe Torres
190 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:50:59
Oh I forgot to jump on the siggy debate!
I'll simply quote what I heard from one of my footie coaches: "a player who does great things may not be a great player"
Brent Stephens
191 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:51:31
Steve #183 you say Beni was fit last season. He had several months out with injury (July - October), was performing well before that and is now getting back into it.
Brent Stephens
192 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:53:01
PS Beni's brother is Divin Baningime!
Tony Hill
193 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:54:34
The thing with Silva is that I think he represents the best chance of creating a proper Everton side. We've had some horrible missteps, to put it mildly, but I think he has an Everton spirit and I want to see again the football of the 60s which was our aesthetic peak as far as I am concerned. I want those who never saw that, but who honour the heritage, to be thrilled in the same way.

Martinez in his first 6 months nearly got there, but there's something about this manager which fills me with hope - contrary to my view before he was appointed.

We had a sense of it today and we've had it in quite a few other games since he came, in flashes. He wants what we want. Stick with him and I think he'll do it.

Jim Wilson
194 Posted 19/10/2019 at 18:55:13
I don't know why Sigurdsson isn't played up front.
His contribution to the midfield is limited but he does have an eye for a goal.
Brent Stephens
195 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:01:24
PS PS. Beni started for the U23s last night as well as being on the bench this afternoon. How often does that happen?!
Martin Mason
196 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:05:12
At last, round pegs in round holes, isn't it amazing the difference it makes? Very good performance from all but for me special praise to Tom Davies, he played today like he played for the England U21's in mid week, imperious in central midfield. Also very good were Gomez, Iwobi, Bernard and, dare I say it, Theo Walcott. The only slight disappointment was that we didn't score the number of goals that we deserved.
Should Sigurdsson play or not? Surely that question answers itself in how we played today? Well done and thanks Blues.
Steve Ferns
197 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:06:17
Jim, hé doesn’t score enough inside the box. All his goals come from the range where he scored today, edge of the box or just inside, running into space. He’s better in this area.

If we played a 442, and he was up top he’s drop off the striker and end up in the same position.

John Raftery
198 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:07:13
Iwobi was the player who made the most impact in terms of lifting the tempo of our play. His forward running with the ball gave our attacks momentum, he linked well with Walcott and Richarlison while also regularly getting into scoring positions in the box. On another day he might have notched a couple. It will be interesting to see how he develops in the coming weeks as he builds better understanding with his colleagues.

The Gomes/Davies duo functioned very effectively as a midfield pairing, not only disrupting West Ham’s play but also using the ball quickly and purposefully. At the back Mina, who has been our most consistent performer this season, had another dominant game while Sidibé, deceptively fast, built on the favourable impression he created at Lincoln and Sheffield.

One win does not a recovery make but this was a welcome start.

Dave Evans
199 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:17:37
Smug mode. I said last year that when Davies was getting pilloried on here that he was a nailed on England midfielder by 25.
Credit to Silva. Finally he changed it. When the option was not on short the players went quickly long.
Jay @ 95 You are wrong about Iwobi. Things did not always come off for him but he keeps play quick and intense
John Keating
200 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:18:16
Tony 193
I've just saw a bit of the BT recording I put on before watching the game.
Can't believe the Mina goal from the corner wasn't allowed and a free kick not given to us instead of the corner they were give and nearly scored from.

Anyway that's besides the point.

I don't think we can give Silva the thumbs up based on ne result against a very poor West Ham. Seems we've been here before and he's reverted to type.

As I mentioned in my previous post it was a great result which we badly needed obtained by a far better balanced team.
However, I hear Silva mention prior to the game that Schneiderlin wasn't in the squad as he picked up an injury and Sigi not started because he'd played 2 internationals.

I just wonder if he would have reverted to his usual set up if these two hadn't been in those situations? If so I doubt we would have seen the quicker, more forward thinking play we saw this afternoon.

Before you make a judgement on Silva let's see how he copes next match, then the next.
So far he doesn't deserve any praise. Today was the least we should expect

Tony Hill
201 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:32:07
I agree, John. But you and I know what Everton are about, or should be about, and I think Silva feels the same. He loves the geometric beauty of football, and so do we. I think he'll get us there and that he understands our demands.

I fully grasp why others think that the above is bollocks.

Time, as ever, will tell.

Martin Mason
202 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:39:17
Silva didn't drop Sigurdsson and Schneiderlin then? We are doomed if he plays them against Brighton. If he does then it will prove his incompetence.
Christy Ring
203 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:44:51
Martin@196 Agree when you put round pegs in round holes it works perfectly and today was one of the few times we have seen it. By the way, I was right about Schneiderlin, he was injured, there’s no way Silva would have dropped him from the squad, I hope Silva can now see the BIGGER picture, and sticks with Davies, he has to play the same team next Saturday
Dave Williams
204 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:44:55
Tony- if he can deliver that we will all stand and applaud. There were signs last season and that’s why there has been such angst at what has happened so far this season. If he can build on this and recognise that this team is the one which can form the backbone of the future then all demands for his dismissal will cease.
The big question is can he do it or was today just a one off? The next two games will be very interesting. We have all been clamouring for Siggy and Morgan to be dropped and we had energy and desire today. Will he stick with it?
John McFarlane Snr
205 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:47:02
Hi John [198],

I got home from the match at 4:15, and watched it again because my 'Young Lady' had recorded it for me, like any game, in my opinion, the TV experience does not do justice to the performance. The atmosphere can't be transmitted, you have to be there to fully appreciate it.

While I admit that we need to replicate this (what I consider) good all-round showing – like yourself, if I've interpreted your post correctly – there are some, and they have an absolute right to express their views, who appear to be taking it in negative way. By all means, we must consider what lies ahead, but let's bask in the warmth that a good result brings.

James Hughes
206 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:47:51
John, the ref was poor and For the Mina goal, the pundits were saying he blew the whistle too early. It should have been reviewed by VAR.

Never knew about the comments on Sideways and Siggi and that is worrying. I hope we don't revert back to same old, same old next week.

Robert Workman
207 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:50:46
I just wonder how many additional points we would have picked up had Silva made these changes much earlier in the season - Villa, Bournemouth, Burnley and, in particular, Sheffield United?
John Hammond
208 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:52:09
Well, you can't say that wasn't deserved but jesus we should have had that sewn up by half time. Instead we watched a brilliant performance that at the same time left us with that sick feeling they would equalise.

Walcott was great but let's be realistic - it's a performance that probably won't be repeated. Still, this should be the lineup going forward. Walcott deserves to start at Brighton.

As for Silva, how has it gotten to this situation for him to realise that dropping poor performing players is a good thing? Why does it take a 2 week break to figure out we have decent players that can come in and do a job?

Paul Birmingham
209 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:53:19
Great to get a win and my younger brothers operation went well yesterday at the Aintree Hospital, so some genuine fresh hope now, after this tonic of the well fought game albeit West Ham, didn’t poise too much in terms of chances, but well done to the team for getting stuck in and playing with pace, and drive.

I’m not going to be lulled into any false dawn, this level and purpose must be default for every Everton game.

Better balance, movement and team play but it’s a start. My ma8, from West Ham, said it should have been 7.

Puzzled by the officials with some strange descisions, but tonight we look on a few more teams, below us.

Let’s bust the South Coast jinx next week at

Let’s hope both goals get some plaudits by the media that would be a first for some time.

David Pearl
210 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:55:01
Doubt Silva will change a winning team... would he? It wasn't just a win, it was the best performance for months.

Sidibe didn't have much to do today but l'd still keep him in the side. I'd also keep Richarlison up top, whether he likes it or not. Not too impressed with the tackle and free kick he gave away on the edge of our box. Can't fault his effort but he needs to use his head.

Derek Taylor
211 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:57:05
Nice to see all problems solved and the manager's future secured so easily. All he needed to do was endorse our ToffeeWeb thinking, make a few changes and speed up the way his team play. A true genius.
Andrew Dempsey
212 Posted 19/10/2019 at 19:58:29
The un-holy trinity of Sigurdsson, Schneiderlin and Calvert-Lewin don’t start this game and we look like running up a Rugby score against a side unbeaten away from home in the PL this season.

Pace, energy, forward momentum, good movement, playing high up, not inviting pressure on our defence.
He has to play this way away from home now, and I’ll be encouraged that he’s learnt from his mistakes.
You can’t coach DCL into becoming a good player, it’s just not there at the top level. Siggy is a fantastic special teams player sub, but not a starter.
And Schneiderlin should never be near a matchday squad again.
Stick to these principles and we’ll fly up the table.

John Keating
213 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:08:20
James 206
yes James I saw the "goal" on the telly when I got home.
Terrible decision from the ref.
I would have thought that with VAR in a situation like that it would have been the way to let the move take it's course and revisit it on VAR after the action?

Had West Ham scored from that corner would VAR have looked back to see the foul prior to awarding the corner?
It really is confusing.

Regarding Sigi and Schneiderlin. We just assumed both had been dropped. One because he had not been performing and didn't deserve a start so on the bench. The other because he brings absolutely nothing to the team and left out the matchday squad. We were wrong in both cases.

Surely Silva, injuries apart, has to give the lads who performed well today a start next game.

Christy Ring
214 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:08:42
If Silva can’t see, how good the performance was today, all over the field, by a team probably picked because of injuries, and makes any changes for Brighton, he definitely deserves to go.
Peter Dodds
215 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:11:18
It was the intensity of the game today that did it for me. Right from the off it was clear that Gomes, Davies, Iwobi, Sidibé et al had just one idea, and that was to get up the scoring end. It helped that WHU were very open and there was plenty of space to move the ball forwards - it might have been different with a tighter opposition. When Siggy came on the pace of his first few passes was so slow that it stood out in stark contrast to how things had gone until then. Bernard is class but so infuriating - 8 out of 10 times his final pass goes astray!
Martin Mason
216 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:15:57
Siva did change the formation today too in that we played without a true negative defensive mid but 2 central midfielders who can play and get forward and this is the best position for both Davies and Gomez. We also played with at least 2 men forward most of the time rather than a lone striker I will give Siva the doubt today that he has realised that the strategy of one man forward and 2 defensive and negative midfielders is wrong. Whatever he did today he had the right players in the right positions. I believe that we played a variant of 433 today that worked brilliantly. We also played a better variation of zonal marking on set pieces and again it was correct. We played like Liverpool today
Did I remember to say that Jordan Pickford is the best goalie in the EPL? How about Iwobe as the best buy we've made in years? How about Tom Davies as Everton Captain and legend in years to come?
Steavey Buckley
217 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:20:47
The changes in midfield were overdue, while Sidibe should not be going anywhere except as Everton's next right back. The changes in midfield allowed Everton to move the ball quickly forward instead of passing the ball side to side which only delays attacking moves.
Martin Mason
218 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:22:00
Andre@212 "Unholy Trinity?" Fantastic. those characteristics you quote are what I (and others) refer to as "Intensity" which is what Liverpool play. One thing I noticed today? I didn't shout about sideways and backward passing.
Raymond Fox
219 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:33:38
Very good performance and result today to repeat myself.
Lets enjoy it, we have had very little to celebrate this season but one swallow doesn't make a summer.

Just because our formation worked today doesn't mean it will next time. Good opposing managers will clock what we did in this game and tweak their line-up to try nulify us, thats what they get paid for.

John Keating
220 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:36:24
After a season and a bit maybe now Silva will finally realise that we can change the team and tactics to suit the opponents.

Some have been saying we have to play Schneiderlin as he is the only one, now Gbamin is out, that can sit in front of the defence and "spray" magical passes around.
Possibly today showed there might be an alternative.

There will be games maybe we need someone sitting in, some games we need DCL up front but surely there are alternatives to the stale slow boring team selection and tactics we have witnessed since Silva came in.

Andrew Keatley
221 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:37:20
Lots to celebrate today, regardless of how poor West Ham were.

Iwobi was a big plus for me; he always looks to take the ball on the half-turn, and trusts himself enough to take calculated risks when in possession. He regularly took up good positions - and that allowed Gomes and Davies options to pass the ball early. Bernard and Walcott too. His movement (and Richarlison's) that led to the spurned one-on-one chance (great play from Sidibe) was a joy to watch; it was such a shame he rushed the finish.

My fear is that very little of today's success was down to design. Silva made some tough calls for sure - dropping Sigurdsson and DCL, pushing Richarlison through the middle, recalling Bernard and Walcott... but in many ways that was Silva reverting to the line-up from 12 months ago (bar Iwobi for Sigurdsson). The changes that came because his hand was forced - Sidibe for Coleman, Davies and Gomes in because Delph and Schneiderlin were both out - might have only happened by default. Such is football though, and I'll happily take the rub of the green for today.

Mark Guglielmo
222 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:37:55
Despite a couple last men in the Titanic, the rest of us have found a great spot for Gylfi — off the bench against tired legs.

Sometimes I think a few of you watch the matches with the sound off while reading a newspaper. Mind-boggling.

West Ham was undefeated away coming into this match.
We missed 2 sitters (which can be fixed)
Walcott hit the bar.
Richarlison hit the post.
The utterly horrid ref cost Mina a much-deserved goal. This should have been 5-0 or 6-0.

MotM was Gomes followed very closely by Sidibe. Someone above said Iwobi was the worst of our XI and I actually agree. That said he still had a better game than any of Gylfi's previous 8, so there's that.

Morgan shouldn't see another match this season; Coleman and Sigurdsson now have to prove they deserve to start again as far as I'm concerned.


Danny O'Neill
223 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:42:37
I don't think we did change the formation today. We just used different players to implement it to better effect.

Also, I agree Christy, injuries did dictate today's selection. The fact Gomez was available again meant that the manager selected a player who hadn't been available previously. A player selected by the manager who made an impact and was hugely influential in the team's improved performance.

Darren Hind
224 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:46:56
Good performance.

What a difference. High energy and passion.

West Ham are a decent team, but they simply could not build any attacks due to our intensity. It gave our defenders a much needed confidence building easy afternoon.

Defensively we are still a worry. Mina and Kean got themselves in a sorry mess on the rare occasions WH did threaten - How did they let a guy get in a shot from a few yards directly from a corner ? I wonder if they will ever learn ?

Having said that I thought Mina and Sidibe were excellent going forward, Mina was a proper handful. If I'm honest, I'm far happier with him in the opposition box.

I still havent seen a recording so I don't know why his "goal" was disallowed.. . or why was Walcott pulled back for the other disallowed "goal". . It just looked like a cleverly taken quick free kick. I will wait to see recording before I comment further.

Made up with that performance. What was very clear to me, is that Silva has players who want to play for him. . he just needs to start selecting them a little more often

Danny O'Neill
225 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:50:56
I said on the live forum Darren, if football can get over it's suspicion of video technology and fully embrace it like rugby, we go 2-0 up with Mina's goal.

We've kind of half baked it with VAR and even that gets a kicking from the pundits who seem to feel aggrieved at being denied the controversy they love vice clear decisions being made based on evidence rather than opinion.

Darren Hind
226 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:54:03
post 147

There's always one. . even when we have a good day somebody will be hellbent on making a complete Toby of themselves.

Mark Guglielmo
227 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:55:06
Read a bit more of the comments and saw a lot of perplexed supporters over VAR. I don't know if you were at the match (god bless if you were) or not, or maybe no one watches other football where VAR has been in play for years now, but once the referee blows the whistle, that's it. No VAR.

It's precisely why the sideline refs are told to keep the flag down and NOT blow the whistle for close offside calls. The ref is SUPPOSED to let the play develop and let VAR sort it out. The only thing that should be complained about is just how awful that whistle was. Not to mention the one good chance they had (the corner where Pickford made a brilliant stop) should never have been a corner in the first place. Sidibe got his legs taken out from under him, should have drawn a booking, and didn't even touch the ball!

The ref was so bad I almost can't believe an EPL ref could be that incompetent.

Ah, well, 2-0! Great lineup, absolutely brilliant play with heart and guts, and hopefully the start of a great run of form. My biggest concern is a) winning away, and b) realizing that TODAY'S strategy (creative play, always moving upfield, actually *gasp* playing through the center of the pitch) is what's needed to break down a park-the-bus/counter side, which assuredly is what Brighton will do next week. I'd wager today featured the fewest crosses in Silva's 47 matches.

Mark Guglielmo
228 Posted 19/10/2019 at 20:58:57
Oh, sorry, one final thought. 7 of the 10 who started were Brands acquisitions. Coincidence? I highly doubt it. I imagine this was just a glimpse of what he's trying to build.
Danny O'Neill
229 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:06:38
Gomez made a huge difference. The manager can't be slated for not selecting him because he hasn't been available.

Davies gave us more energy; yes the manager now has a decision to make if Schneiderlin is available again.

We had more movement and energy up front. Calvert-Lewin doesn't give us that. Although restricted to a win-confirming cameo, I wonder if the recently much maligned Sigurdsson would have looked a different player with more movement in front of him.

A much needed great performance from a squad that showed it is much better than recent results indicate.

I'm old school. Despite the Sky hype, I don't tend to worry about the league table until Christmas. 2 points off Tottenham guys!

Don Alexander
230 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:07:00
The two-week break, injuries, a suspension or whatever it was today gives grounds for cautious optimism providing we continue to play with two or three players minimum vying to be MOTM, as per today.

Great that we won but we need to identify Leicester City in third place, only seven points better off than us, as eminently catch-able to start with. That would show a professional outlook.

Tony Hill
231 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:09:28
I've just had another look at Sigurdsson's goal. I know he's absent a lot of the time and I wanted him dropped, but he's one for the connoisseur isn't he?
Mark Guglielmo
232 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:12:08
Tony 231

Absolute belter that

The thing about Siggy is that he has those moments of brilliance in a sea of utter mediocre invisibility. I think he's perfect coming off the bench for a jolt. Credit where it's due, he sealed the win today (even though it should have been long over by then)

is Everton the unluckiest team in the Premier League or what?

Andrew Keatley
233 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:19:55
Mark (227) - Interesting insights regarding VAR. Today's ref - Paul Tierney - made a series of strange decisions, and I hope that our victory does not enable him to wriggle off the hook when it comes to any scrutiny he should be facing. Disallowing the Mina goal, as well as the award of a non-corner that (but for the Mina deflection and Pickford save) almost led to a West Ham equaliser - those were not borderline bad decisions, they were maddeningly inept decisions. Let's hope Paul gets a few weeks running the line in League One by way of a punishment.
Danny O'Neill
234 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:22:08
I remember Sheedy for Everton sometimes Tony. I used to stand next to (yes those were the days!!), fellow supporters who used to call him lazy and idle for large parts of the game. Similarly, John Barnes in an England shirt (not that I care too much for England or international football) was berated for not giving enough for 90 minutes.

Good teams sometimes have to "carry" those types of players because although they may appear inactive for 80 minutes, one act of brilliance or a good 10 minute spell can change and win a game.

That said, I think Sigurdsson offers more. I revert back to my previous point. I wonder how he would have faired today with more movement in front of him than he has been used to thus far this season.

Ian Riley
235 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:28:24
Fully deserved. The players got at West Ham from the first minute. Pace, tackling, and stopped West Ham playing. First game I saw with real willingness to win the game by the players. The quality we have with the hunger was a pleasure to watch.

By half time we should have been three up. An injury time goal to seal the game is not good for the nervous system let alone the heart. It's a worry for another day but if we show that work rate and create chances, more days like today will happen. A striker is a must next summer. If we don't buy another player a proven 20 goal a season striker is a priority.

Finally, well done Mr Silva. Made changes and it worked. Watch match of the day for the first time in weeks. Let's press ahead, today set the standard in work rate.

Jim Wilson
236 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:30:50
Steve Ferns - obviously if you are not inside the box you can't score inside the box.....
Kevin Prytherch
237 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:31:10
Gylfi Sigurdsson plays well when there is space. He is a good player against the better teams who look to attack, there is more space when he gets the ball and he looks effective. He is poor when there is no space - ie when teams sit back.

Personally, I would leave him on the bench against teams who are likely to sit back (home vs most teams) but, if we score and the opposition has to attack more, he is an ideal player to bring on and exploit the space afforded.

Danny O'Neill
238 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:38:49
But the space is created by the players in front of him Kevin right? Either movement into space for him to play them in, or movement to create space for him to do what he done today.

Whoever you play against, and I get your point about "park the bus" teams, if your forwards create space through movement, it makes the midfielders' job a whole lot easier.

Mark Guglielmo
239 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:39:19
Danny @234, I'm not sure Gylfi would have fared as well. Iwobi was a large part of the reason why there was a lot of space today, regardless of his sometimes errant passes or being dispossessed. When you play an attacking style and constantly are looking to turn and move the ball upfield, there are going to be more turnovers, that's just the game.

Anyone can make safe passes sideways or out to a wing for a cross (I fell asleep just typing that sentence). Iwobi also plays more of a box-to-box type. Okay, so he doesn't tackle. He certainly gets in the way a lot and disrupts the opponent's flow, quickly turning to get open for a build-up pass from Gomes, or Davies, or Mina. Gylfi doesn't have the pace to do that.

However, off the bench? He's got the skill and obviously the ability to change a game with a trademark strike from 18' or beyond. And most sides have tired legs at the back by then.

Only time I could see him back in the starting XI is possibly in a 4-4-2, but even then I'm not sure who to bench for him. For now, CM is Iwobi's to lose IMO.

Jay Harris
240 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:42:15
The thing I love about Tom Davies is even if he is not having a great game he brings so much energy to the team and never hides.

Also like to give a shout out to Yerry Mina who I thought was a colossus and should have had his goal allowed and also to my MOTM Theo Walcott who was tireless in defence and attack.

Its the first time since last season we have played as a team with a common sense of purpose rather than playing like a collection of individuals.

The only negative for me is how we still struggle to score goals. It should have been an easy 5-0 today rather than a nervy 1-0 going into the end of the game.

Jerome Shields
241 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:46:42
Theo Walcott is a difference player when there is more movement and swifter passing. Richarlison got more confident as the game when on. I also liked the look of Kean.

If Silva can keep Everton playing this way, it will certainly provide a platform for improvement for quite a few players.

Danny O'Neill
242 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:48:58
4-4-2 is obsolete. In the modern game, you simply get overloaded in midfield which is where games are controlled, won and / or lost.

I think we lined up 4-4-2 (ish) against Sheffield United in the 2nd half.

Players like Sigurdsson will play better when they have better movement in front of them to give them options; either to feed those players' movement, or exploit the space those players create.

Tom Bowers
243 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:50:00
We need to kick on from here. Yes it was great to get the win and a good performance by everyone overall but we have to make every game count for something otherwise the season will just become hohum yet again and with what the RS have been achieving (and getting away with) it would be nice to see Everton rise up the table.
Manure playing poor and a much weakened side tomorrow sees the RS having it easy again. ( Jerk Atkinson the ref.)
David Pearl
244 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:50:57
I think it comes back to confidence. I thought Iwobi Richarlison and Digne were our poorest performers but each of them kept going. We have good players and good players waiting for a chance to come on. This is what we want. Silva may have got a bit lucky having Coleman, Delph and Schneiderlin out which forced his hand a bit. The test is our next away game. And Walcott, thats what we want to see. Still has great ability. If its not going well next week or when players tire l want to see Silva making the right changes and have the guts and know how to change shape. I know he's only on a few million a year bless him so it might be asking too much. He got the performance he needed today though.
Don Alexander
245 Posted 19/10/2019 at 21:52:34
To me Gylfi needs the movement ahead of him to be more random. When that happens he comes into his own. I'd wager that any opposition would prefer to see him in our defensive areas rather than worrying the life out of their own defence with skills like these;

(Apologies for the horrendous soundtrack BTW)

Mark Guglielmo
246 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:02:23
Danny @242, you're right, we did, but with different people on the field so it's hardly a good comparison. Ironically Gylfi started that day.

Today's starting XI would have demolished Sheffield. Did anyone notice that possession dropped to 52% and yet we were on the front foot all day?

The combination of Sigurdsson, Schneiderlin, Calvert-Lewin and Delph was good for 65% possession every game and yet... nothing. It's very easy to control possession when all the other team has to do is watch us pass it around at the centre-line.

David Pearl
247 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:03:42
Don, good job the mute button has been invented. Maybe Silva has so many options he hasn't known what to do with them.

Anyway... l will be watching MOTD tonight for the first time in ages!

Mark Guglielmo
248 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:06:22
For those who didn't take note, 7 of the 10 starters were Brands signings of the past 3 windows. Hmmmm. Imagine that. The only way to progress is by moving forward, as dumb as that sounds to have to say.

Onward & upward. COYB

Mike Oates
249 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:12:11
Andre Gomes is the one player who just has to be in the team. Without him were are nothing, with him we dominate teams. His strength, his visual awareness, his drive to move forward is just something no one else has in the squad has.
He is absolutely tactically aware of what's required, he brings so many players into the game, both full backs thrive with him in the team, Sigurdsson, Iwobi in the No 10 get the space, get the ball earlier enough to be creative - he is so indispensable.
Neil Wood
250 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:46:12
Lucky you David the wife is insisting on watching Jonathan Ross !!! FFS
Bill Gienapp
251 Posted 19/10/2019 at 22:55:02
I suspect we won't be seeing much of Schneiderlin moving forward. Going into the season, he was at best 4th choice in midfield, behind Gomes, Delph and Gbamin. Problem is, at least two of those guys have been consistently hurt up to this point. However, with Delph seemingly only sidelined for the short-term and Davies seizing his opportunity today with both hands, I wouldn't be surprised if Schneiderlin finds himself struggling to even make the bench before long.

Anyway, aside from a slew of spurned opportunities that might have cost us on a different day, there was hardly anything to dislike about that performance. Thought the entire starting XI played well and should keep their places next week. That's probably the best Walcott has looked for us since he first arrived under Allardyce.

For me, this was the first step in a two-part process. If Silva can replicate this level of performance next week, and come up with a road win against a perfectly beatable Brighton side, it will calm some nerves and get us right back into the thick of the table. Then we'll have a decent platform to build on.

On a side note, I know Haller's off to a good start for West Ham and many on here thought he'd have been a good transfer target for us. I was curious to see him in action and have to admit, I can barely recall him being on the pitch. Did he even touch the ball?

Sean Kelly
252 Posted 19/10/2019 at 23:00:34
I only read a few posts but this changes nothing for me regarding Silva. Everton needed and got the 3 points but saving Silva is only putting off the inevitable. Winning consistently is not his strong point. Get rid before he goes on another losing streak. Be honest folks don’t let 3 points cloud your judgement on Silva.
Michael Lynch
253 Posted 19/10/2019 at 23:07:46
Great atmosphere, great match. That was like watching a different team. Let's see if we can recreate this over the next three games.

As others have said, Davies and Gomes were superb and Iwobi was a different kind of number 10 - possibly had more impact on the game than Siggi has had all season, and then Siggi comes on and does what only he can do!

For me, the standout performance - because I wasn't expecting it - was Sidibe. Absolutely superb - powerful, deceptively quick and seems to have great awareness of what's going on around him. He often shunned the obvious pass to do something a bit different - like the lovely little short ball to Theo in the box in the second half, and he always got his head up before he crossed rather than just hoisting it in. Really hope this is the beginning of a new era at right back for us, after the brilliant years we've had from Seamus.

Kevin Prytherch
254 Posted 19/10/2019 at 23:53:43
Sigurdsson might play better if players in front of him create space, however when teams defend deep there is less opportunity for players in front of him to do this and he becomes an ineffective passenger.

However, if we get in front and teams, who would normally park the bus, now have to come at us then it plays into Sigurdssons strengths. He then becomes a brilliant player to bring on and try to put the game to bed.

I would still start Sigurdsson against all of the better teams.

Don Alexander
256 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:17:19
Interesting take Kev (#254), genuinely. I just hope that, whatever goes on at FF, the players realise they have other talented team-mates all over the pitch to enable themselves to be dropped if they lose form (and that happens to even the best). Only when that penny drops on every single player will we see a professional assault on the trophies.
David Pearl
257 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:20:34
Highlights now up on official site,
However you should strike a deal that any time we win you watch motd and when we lose you watch Jonathan Ross. All my marriage guidance tips are free!
Ashley Roberts
258 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:24:06
While I did not see the game today, I was so heartened to see that Shneiderlin was nowhere to be seen in the match day squad. For myself I have never understood how this snail side passing crab has managed to be in the first team. I know I have been banging on about this for a long time but it has been so clear that his presence in the team along with a slow moving Sigurdsson has been the major problem. I am just amazed that Silva was totally blind to this which seriously calls in to doubt his capability. There is some mention on ToffeeWeb that Shneiderlin May have been injured and hence his lack of presence. This will certainly be tested next week. For me it has to be Gomes with either Davis or Gbamin in midfield. This would leave Delph as being a back up. I like the fact that Iwobi was preferred at # 10 today but my preference would be to star Bernard there as he has the trickery to bring others in to play. Let’s hope that Silva has seen the light. Maybe one of the posters dreams came true and he got a message from Howard. All we be made clear against Brighton next week.
Ian Riley
259 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:27:15
Sean#252 it's a win, 3 points nothing else. What today showed that the manager has the backing off the players. Not scared to drop players with big transfer fees. Today apparently was win or go for him. Well he stays and for a team low on confidence the football at times was a delight.

No, it's not fixed by a mile but it's a start. Let's face it the players have set the standard today. It's up to them to carry that on to next week.

David Pearl
260 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:37:46
I’ve worked out how we won today. A combination of two things.
1. Late injuries meant Silva was forced into changes.
2. He only had 3 days to train with the players after the international break.

I have no problem with good players, therefore no preconceived notion on Walcott, Tosun, Schneiderlin, Davies, Pickford, Coleman, DCL, Keane... Duncan Ferguson as coach. It’s up to the manager to pick the team, set the formation and tactics. He has a very good, expensive squad and it’s up to him to get them performing. Today they did... and now let’s see if they can keep it going. 90 points still to play for.

Mark Guglielmo
261 Posted 20/10/2019 at 00:45:27
Bill #251 excellent synopsis.

Haller was indeed on the pitch but I'd wager he didn't know Yerry "The Beast" Mina was going to bottle him up like a genie.

David #260 those were the 2 reasons, huh? I'd put forth the one you omitted:

3. Every player on the pitch gave their all with an inspired performance, and the necessary change by removing the "stuck in the La Brea tar pits" guys with creative types who showed they wanted to be there and wanted to win.

I didn't count a single moment where any one of the XI stood still. Unlike say, the past 8 matches where they may as well have been stone pillars.

Next week for me is an even bigger test. Away, and against a team that's going to sit back and look to counter.


Ed Prytherch
262 Posted 20/10/2019 at 01:42:15
How many corners did West Ham have today, 3 or 4 ? and they almost scored from one of them. We may not be out of the woods yet. An entertaining game and a good result but still a work in progress.
Alexander Murphy
263 Posted 20/10/2019 at 01:49:07
Delighted that OUR Everton won. Delighted.

Where have they been ?

That bunch of lightweights.
Do not get Me wrong, I willtake a barrel load of convincing from henceforth that Marco is awesome. I don't think that he is.

Those two faced aresholes played today.

BIGGEST sorry, but I'm not prepare to accept that the team changes and game plan inspired our witless, feckless meandering fools to blossom.

He might be awkward and pedantic.
But, to order his subordinates around.
That's a bosses role.
Isn't it ?

Now. Tom Davies has never convinced Me that he's going to be top drawer. So why ?
Because, he's Pureblood Evertonian.
And My FEAR has always been that he'd be prepared to sacrifice common sense in place of loyalty.
Johnny Ebbrell did.

I want Tom to become a great Everton player.

To do that, Tom needs to decide exactly what sort of player that he truly is.
"Tommy Allsorts" ?
NO thanks !

We have seen young Tom playing all over the show.
And he was beginning to play games like that.
All over the show. Headless.
He's FAR too young to be all over the park in a different department each week.
FFS, squad numbers seem (to Me) to have fucked up lineups.

As fans, we still define players roles numerically.
"A true number ten".

I have NO doubt that TD would expire through effort for EFC.

My point here is that Marco Silver hasn't got the best out of is players. FACT.
Are his players being honest with him ?
Are they bollocks !

Playing with no commitment ?

I'm expecting them false wimps to revert to type.
They've done it too many times before.

Loved today tough. Shame that I really had to miss going

Derek Thomas
264 Posted 20/10/2019 at 01:56:53
By accident or design, a betfer performance. Now do it again next week at Brighton.

It was sometimes said that Moyes was 'a better manager' when he had less players to pick tended to concentrate the mind and reduce the 'overthinking'

With injuries and Schneiderlin finally dropped, we played with NO out and out dedicated 'holder / tackler'. Davies and Gomes shared the Centre Mid Field...none of this complicated dropping into the middle of the 2 centrebacks, then tippy tap it about.

I said on another thread, A Whole Mid Field Unit, not individuals, 'KISS' and do it at pace.
The reason or combination of reasons, Brands told him change it, whatever. It doesn't matter now. Its better than what went before. Don't overthink it, tinker with it, tweak it.

Just Repeat It at Brighton and the next 28 games (plus cup games)

John Boon
265 Posted 20/10/2019 at 03:32:01
TW is a great outlet for every supporter to see the game and respond as only they see it. I was impressed by every player even though some stood out more than others. However it is really astonishing to see such vast differences in game perception. By reading every post about the game almost every player had their best game ever and there were many MOM'S depending how you saw the game.

One post described Richarleson, Iwobi and Wallcot as the weakest players on the field. Many others thought Wallcot was outstanding, as I did personally.I also thought Iwobi and Richarleson worked their arses off. It really is amazing how so many loyal Blues all have a different pespective. Once again I thought the whole team fought like tigers and left West Ham running scared More of this please.

Justin Doone
266 Posted 20/10/2019 at 03:58:36
Excellent much needed win.
Greatly improved energy and movement.
Passes were quickly delivered and mostly forward.

But still incredibly frustrating. Davies has got to score in the first 5 minutes. Iwobi in the 76, both criminal misses.

In general Davies brought exactly what I expected and have wanted. Energy, forward passing, closing down, finding space to give defenders an option to pass too.

But a few times he'd sprint forward 30 yards needlessly to close someone down near the corner flag on his own but simply be passed by having left a gaping hole in our midfield. He needs to learn.

Everyone was guilty of too many unforced passes either to the opposition or simply the marked man rather than to someone in space.

It's a team game but again to many players guilty of trying to pass or shoot from impossible angles rather than the simple unmarked team mate.

Richarlison needs to be stronger. I get he's pushed and knocked but most of them are minor. Losing the ball in dangerous areas is just not on. He's not a centre forward for me, there's no hold up play. He's also become shot shy, trying to dribble instead of just shooting.

Walcott unlucky not to score and like Siggy who did I was just delighted they chose to shoot.

My MOTM was Mina. Imense at the back and he wrongfully had a good goal disallowed.

I'm being critical because I expect better as should the players and manager but very pleased with the general attitude, tempo, clean sheet and win.

Justin Doone
267 Posted 20/10/2019 at 04:12:36
On Walcott he's the same as always.
Pace, made good forward find, worked hard on his defensive duties.

Sadly his final ball, delivery, decision is always the same. Poor. Never finds a blue shirt, doesn't have the skill to dribble past players, can't cross and for a player who wants to be a striker his shooting is woeful.

We won because we played well enough against a poor team on the day. If we play like that against other teams we will not.

Effort yes, ability, skill, decision making still very much work in progress.

Without Mina.. I don't like to think.

Ernie Baywood
268 Posted 20/10/2019 at 05:32:49
Having watched the game again I'm sticking with yesterday's review.

Everyone played their part but the difference was Gomes and Davies. And an emphasis on being brave when we won possession in our half.

I've watched good players toil all season. We look for the simple answer - Sigurdsson is out of form, Richarlison is out of form, Walcott's no good, Kean is no good, Iwobi is no good.

How likely is it that these players can't do a thing right?

It's far more likely that we're not playing to their strengths. And in the case of every player listed above, they want the ball in space in the final third before team's have settled two banks of four in front of them.

I couldn't tell you how many times in the last couple of months our midfield have received the ball and gone straight back to the centre backs or full backs. I'll take a punt that our defence has had more than 50% of our touches.

Yesterday every touch was forward. We got it wrong plenty of times but when it came off we had 4 decent attackers running at 4 or 5 defenders. If you're going to play this formation then you've got to play for those odds.

I'm sure every attacker who missed out yesterday will be gutted... considering the service that they have had.

And I agree with others, I thought our options yesterday wasted a lot of good positions.

Annika Herbert
269 Posted 20/10/2019 at 07:36:54
Don@245, Siggy hasn't been worrying the life out of defences for a long time!
Sam Hoare
270 Posted 20/10/2019 at 07:52:29
Justin@267, a strange day to make those comments about Walcott! Normally I’d agree but to say he can’t pass or find a man after a very nice, smart assist for Bernard and can’t shoot after a tremendous, sweetly struck volley was unlucky to smash into the post seems odd timing!

Also we’d have beaten a lot of teams playing like we did yesterday. There was more than effort on display and we should have won by 4 or 5 if we’d been more clinical/lucky.

Peter Mills
271 Posted 20/10/2019 at 09:02:16
Much improved - fluent, coherent, structured, enjoyable. Gone were the lack of pace, the stumbles, the gloom.

Our manager’s command of the English language seemed much better following a victory.

Stan Schofield
272 Posted 20/10/2019 at 09:37:17
We basically tore West Ham apart yesterday, and in the face of appalling decisions by the ref. We hid the woodwork three times, and there were so many shots on target.

Last season, we had to continually face bad refereeing decisions against us, appalling decisions that contributed significantly to detrimental results. The ref yesterday looked completely out of his depth. What the hell is going on?

Even if we hit a good run of form, I fear that bad decisions by refs will continually undermine any progress. It often makes me think the game isn't worth watching, and it's increasingly led me to avoid watching non-Everton games. I only watch Everton games because it's automatic, not through rational choice. Yesterday provided entertainment and the right result, despite the cringeworthy officiating.

Laurie Hartley
273 Posted 20/10/2019 at 09:40:44
I thought the main reason we won this game was that we just out fought them in midfield.

I really rate Mark Noble for what he does for West Ham - a very combatitive player. That is why Gomes and Davies get most of the credit for the win from me. They just never let them settle. This is how we overran the top six teams at the end of last season when Ghana was doing his thing.

Let’s hope we see more of the same from now on.

Bill Watson
274 Posted 20/10/2019 at 10:32:41
A much improved performance with lots of intensity and forward movement.
Why has it taken so long for the penny to drop with Silva?
Just a word for Walcott who had, probably, his best game in an Everton shirt.
Tony Abrahams
275 Posted 20/10/2019 at 10:51:01
Mark@246, it looked like we had a lot more of the ball because as you put it mate, the massive difference was that we played on the front foot!

Nobody more than Sibide, although Mina and Davies were not far behind, and talking of right-backs, the mail have got a really good article about Jonjoe Kenny, a kid who looks like he’s learning and progressing, because it looks like he’s really trying to help himself.

Ray Smith
276 Posted 20/10/2019 at 11:22:04
Stan 272

How true you are re poor refs at Goodison.

From where I was Mina’s goal looked good!

What’s VAR for?

I watched MOTD this morning in the hope that it would be discussed, but NO it wasn’t even shown!

I’m off to Brighton next Saturday with 10 Brighton season ticket holders (has become an annual event) and wasn’t looking forward to it. However, after yesterday I’m hopeful of a result if he plays the same starting 11, but with Coleman and possibly Delph available Silva will probably revert to type. Hope I’m wrong!!!

Christy Ring
277 Posted 20/10/2019 at 11:26:03
It was the most balanced team Silva picked this season, with Gomes and Davies a breath of fresh air, with their energy, quick tempo and forward passing. Walcott, Bernard and Iwobi, ran at West Ham, with speed, and didn't give them time to settle, totally different to our slow pedestrian formation Silva had us playing up to now. Injuries and suspension forced Silva's hand, okay he left Siggy on the bench, but he said he was tired after playing two games for Iceland, if Schneiderlin hadn't cried off with a knock, would Davies have started, probably not, but I hope he can see know, by default, round pegs in round holes, really does work, and see that his tried and trusted is definitely not the way forward. The same team at Brighton please.
Tony Hill
278 Posted 20/10/2019 at 12:35:46
Hey, Ray @276, you'll be badly outnumbered, unless you're going in with our fans. I love Brighton, a cracking trip. It's another vital game for us: we must start winning away.
Frank Crewe
279 Posted 20/10/2019 at 12:41:48
Finally Silva overcame his excessive caution and released the handbrake. Injuries, suspensions etc may have forced his hand but he finally picked a side full of movement, running and pace.
Shneiderlin, Gylfi and Delph have been like dragging an anchor with their sideways and back passing. Gomes, my MotM and Davies, who I am usually pretty hard on, both had great games. Hardly a back pass in sight. Moved the ball forward at every opportunity. Couldn't fault either of them. Richarlison, Bernard, Walcott, and Iwobi full of running and movement attacked with fluidity. They swapped positions, always on the move, offering themselves for the ball. Just sliced through the hammers defence at will. Even Walcott had a great game. Hard luck on his shot that hit the bar.
The defence was solid. Mina had a great game. His goal should never have been ruled out. Another poor decision by an idiot ref who had a terrible game. Both Sidibe and Digne offered width to the attack. Great pass from Sidibe to Iwobi who then missed after being put clean through.
The fact is modern football requires pace and movement, especially from the attacking players. If Silva wishes Everton to make any progress this season he absolutely has to persist with these players. Shneiderlin and Delph should be benched and unfortunately so should Coleman. Sidibe did more than enough to justify an extended run in the side. Coleman has been a great player but since his leg break he has struggled to get back to the player he was. Sidibe was brought in to give him some serious competition and when Kenny returns from his loan we'll have 3 right backs. Something has to give and I think it will be Coleman.
I must be honest I honestly don't know where this leaves Gylfi. We plainly didn't miss him but in the few minutes he was on the pitch he scored another great goal. I doubt he will be happy to settle for a super sub role but I don't see how he can be fitted into the current side.
One more word about Bernard. He would be my first name on the team sheet. Along with Digne he is our new Baines/Pienaar. He gives his all and never stops running. He is unpredictable and something of a luxury player. But he adds spice to the team. The unknown quantity. Hard for defenders to mark. Fleet of foot and always willing to try and beat a defender. I also think we get more corners when he players as he will always try to get to the by-line.
All in all we were a revelation yesterday. Now we have to keep it up. Silva must throw caution to the wind and rely on his players to continue to produce the football they have shown they are capable of.
George Cumiskey
280 Posted 20/10/2019 at 12:48:00
Frank Crewe. Ditto.
Ray Smith
281 Posted 20/10/2019 at 12:52:54
Tony 278

I take the banter before the match, my son in law gets me a ticket.

I’ll be 100yds or so to the right of the away end. They are all in the north end, and (hopefully) float afterwards.

All taken in good spirit.
Half of them make the trip to Goodison as well.

Derek Knox
282 Posted 20/10/2019 at 12:57:04
Like many have already mentioned, why didn't Silva think about changing the side? I was amazed there were five changes, but it proved to be a recipe for success, barely recognisable from previous showings.

I just hope (barring injuries) that he sticks with the same starting eleven, didn't think anyone had a bad game, and they all played as a team, hope we hang on to Sidibe, what a difference he made.

Denis Richardson
283 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:12:32
Good home win and mighty glad to finally get some points and a clean sheet.

However, one swallow does not a summer make. West Ham are notoriously bad on the road and them at home is just the game we needed after losing 4 on the bounce. They may have been playing well but had only beaten Watford on their travels before hand. The real work is to keep this performance up consistently and especially away from home.

Very happy with the points but Silva is a long way from being out of the woods.

Amazing what happens when you don’t play with 7 defensive players on the pitch from the off - who’d a thunk it!

Daniel Thomas
284 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:28:29
@Justin 266.

Agree with your comments and highlighting what Davies needs to learn is spot on.

What I would say about young Tom is his ability to receive the ball on the turn is very good, and this means he is able to get the ball and move it forward a lot quicker. This is exactly what we need. Gomes is also a master at it and I would hope Tom has been watching this in training.

Tom has enough bite in his game to be our Gana replacement, certainly until Gbamin is back, and I hope he gets an extended run in the team to develop this potential.

Also good to see Kean’s reaction to Siggy’s goal. Seems to be enjoying life despite not establishing himself in the first 11 just yet.

3 points next week is a must.

Steve Ferns
285 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:29:12
Frank, I agree with most of what you said. There was still lots of sideways and backwards passing, but it was done quickly and to someone who would get the ball forwards. We also still overplayed it in the final third. This was a symptom of a team lacking confidence, rather than a tactic of the manager. The manager wants us to play like yesterday. He is not someone obsessed with possession statistics.

For example, at Olympiacos, a side that Silva took to their 6th consecutive league title, he had the superior side in Greece, yet observers said that Silva wanted to give the ball away just so they could hit sides on the counter with their devastating pace, embodied by Kostas Fortounis, who operated in a similar role to Iwobi yesterday and used his lightning pace to get 18 goals from midfield (in just 30 games).

Observers may be correct in their criticisms of Siva's Everton. But the failings of the team do not always reflect the failings of the manager. By this I mean the slower plodding style we have exhibited in recent defeats. I think you can see that each match we come out and try to play with tempo, but then we got knocked out of our stride and the players go with safe football and not the game plan. They hit the easy 5 yard pass to avoid the ire of the crowd.

Tom Davies has got a lot of plaudits above. Rightly so. I've always loved him, but I'm heavily biased towards any Liverpudlian. Tom was doing the same things that received criticism last season, only he was doing them more effectively and with less mistakes. The players were aware of the criticism and groans from the crowd with bad passing. This is what makes them play safe football. It's not the game plan, it's how you deal with that particular moment when you have the ball and you're under pressure. In the 90's players were slightly different and instead of hitting a 5 yard pass when scared of the ball, they launched it long in a scared hoof towards the big fella upfront.

When Everton have put a run of form together under Silva, you see his game plan, and it's fast passing football, not possession football. The possession stats also get inflated because of the way the opposition have played us. They park the bus, or use the low block as it's now called. They know they can sit deep and we really struggle to get through such sides, even poor ones, but we play with such a high line that the opposition can get in behind. They also know they will get a set piece and they have a good chance of nicking the win with a set piece.

Brighton are a different side this season under Potter. He favours a passing style and they like to play it out from the back. They should play this way against us as they are at home, and if they do so, then they could well play into our hands. 2 wins and then the Watford game, win that and we are back up and running. The season is not dead, although it is still in the ICU.

Ray Smith
286 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:43:40
Steve 285

Can you explain ICU, not sure about it’s meaning, if the explanation is permissible/printable 😇

Steve Ferns
287 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:48:01
Intensive Care Unit - as in we are not dead but still in trouble.
Sam Hoare
288 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:48:24
Steve@285 I agree with most of that which is why it’s strange he he has persevered so often with the likes of Schneiderlin and Sigurdsson this season when neither bring pace to the middle and the former especially is prone to sideways passes and slowing the tempo down.

I think the middle of the park has been a huge issue for us this season and it’s no coincidence that our best performance came with a new central 3 of Gomes, Davies and Iwobi who can all carry the ball and like to pick forward passes. Replace Davies with a fit Gbamin (and his defensive/athletic capabilities) and I think you’ve got a good balance.

Eric Paul
289 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:48:40
Intensive care unit
Tony Abrahams
290 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:49:25
I’ve read some very intelligent things on this thread, but what Ernie@268, about every touch was looking forward, is what made yesterday’s game so much more enjoyable than anything else I’ve watched this season.

Of course we got it wrong on loads of occasions, but so what, keep playing like that and we will improve ten-fold imo, especially because playing forward with intent ignites the crowd, stops them getting on your back when you make a mistake, and must also be so much easier for the players, than the constant groans they hear, when they play pedestrian football.

In other words, stop worrying about making mistakes because you are going to make them anyway, but keep playing on the front-foot and you will force more mistakes out of your opponents, and will also have the crowd right behind you!

Ray Smith
291 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:55:53
Steve 287

Thanks, and totally agree.

Steve Ferns
292 Posted 20/10/2019 at 13:57:51
Sam, I don't think Schneiderlin would have played so much if either of Gomes or Gbamin were fit. I hope that Davies is now above him in the pecking order. I do think people overstate the sideways passing of Schneiderlin as he has played plenty of forward balls and more ambitious, play switching sideways balls. I think he's played relatively well this season and so it's hard to drop him if he's doing better than Delph and the side is losing. Delph is new and so escaped criticism because he seems to "care more" as he shouts and displays his passion. Schneiderlin is a different personality.

Interestingly, his wife just posted on twitter that had he known that his gesture would have made the papers, he would not have done it. He is not one who likes the publicity.

Also I heard a story from the lady who sits next to me about Marco Silva's support of Clatterbridge that is kept quiet because he also does not want publicity for his good deeds. Whilst the guy over the park wouldn't give a homeless man 50p unless a camera was watching. (Yes gross exaggeration but you know what I mean.)

Steve Ferns
293 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:02:52
Tony, but Tom doesn't have the crowd right behind him. He follows your advice, but yet at the ground and on here and elsewhere he was getting constant criticism last season. Some deserved and some not. I wonder how much of that led to his prolonged absence from the team?

Silva knows the lad is only 21 and so still very young and he needs to protect him from that. playing him in a losing team, and Davies making mistakes, can be very damaging for him. I wonder how much of that thinking, rather than doubting his capabilities, led to this prolonged absence.

Paul Tran
294 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:11:06
I never thought our season was dead. Outside the top two, its a mediocre, everyone can beat everyone league. We need a manager who picks the players with pace, who look forward when they get the ball. If that's Silva, great.

I watched the highlights and we looked good, like I want an Everton team to play. The random selection generator struck gold. Let's see if Silva sticks with the team and takes the game to Brighton.

Yesterday proved there's plenty of talent and pace in this team, when the right players are in it, playing with the right mindset. We all want it, one man's paid a lot of money to produce it and if he carries on doing the job as well as he did yesterday, we'll all be happy.

Jamie Crowley
295 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:12:42
Quite a bit of praise for Tom Davies, a lot of analysis of the kid's game as well, in the comments above.

I was thinking, if we had a coach who approached youth like Frank Lampard does with Mason Mount, would Tom Davies benefit?

Lampard has come in, he's recognized a talented youngster who has loads of potential, but will indeed make mistakes, and said, "OK kid, it's your midfield, you're in charge, go run the show." Mount has absolutely flourished, knowing he's the man and has the coach's backing and confidence.

I wonder where we'd be if we had a manager who afforded Tom Davies that kind of confidence and responsibility?

Personally I'd be completely fine with it. I've always liked Tom Davies immensely, and can't understand the criticism he comes in for. There's a lot of TWers (some highly respected ones I might add) who just rip the stink out of him and believe he's a Championship player.

With a coach handing the kid the keys to the car, I think he'd develop into one of England's best. I really do.

Steve Ferns
296 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:13:34
Paul, do you really think the league is mediocre? I think its an extremely strong league, the strongest in years. I expect English clubs to dominate in European football again. The problem with a strong league is that it's harder to win games.
Tony Hill
297 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:17:05
What I noticed yesterday was how Davies's touch has improved, he always looked comfortable and seemed to have matured. His awareness of the space and movement around him was sharper too.

Confidence is a significant factor, I'm sure.

Sam Hoare
298 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:22:03
Steve, certainly Schneiderlin has been better than many give him credit for. He's done what has been asked of him. But he's certainly not dynamic and has contributed to our slow tempo in the middle. As much as anything, he never seems to want the ball much.
Tony Abrahams
299 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:32:54
Fair points Steve, but I’m talking about the team as a whole mate, which is hopefully what we are going to start witnessing now.

Tom, has had some poor spells, but like someone has wrote on this thread (I’ve forgotten who) he’s been pushed from pillar to post at times, and hopefully he can now play in a settled team and also in a settled position.

The difference between Davies and Schneiderlin, is that one wants to be involved, and the other is quite happy being on the periphery of the game is how I view it, and I agree with Tony H, because I thought Davies had really improved his positional game yesterday, especially when he was on a booking, and had to take more care, although I know not everyone thought this was the case reading through this thread.

Steve Ferns
300 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:33:31
Sam, I think he's a player low on confidence. When he is confident he passes quickly and with more ambition. Like it or not, he's also in our top 3 most accurate long passers, which is why it's infuriating to see him hit those safe passes. When he is confident and plays the longer passes, quickly, he can dictate the tempo and be dynamic.

Morgan Schneiderlin at Southampton 1

Morgan Schneiderlin at Southampton 2

This is only 4 years ago, the lad is still not 30 and he hasn't had an ability-reducing injury.

Paul Tran
301 Posted 20/10/2019 at 14:41:41
Interesting argument, Steve. My instinct is that the league's weaker, but there's merit in what you're saying.

Either way, I'd argue most of the league is like a concertina. Ripe for us to benefit from. When we play the right players in the right way. Plenty of time to take advantage.
Steve Ferns
302 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:01:47
Paul, the Premier League has never been so much richer than the rest of Europe. In my opinion the highest concentration of the world's best players are in England right now. France has been the poor relation for a while now, Germany has been in decline for a while now, which is why they take the likes of Jonjo Kenny and he plays for a top side there, same with Lookman. Also Jaden Sancho might be a revelation, but he joined the second best German side of the last 10 years instantly becoming a first team regular. Italy has long been in decline, with the league mirroring the financial deterioration of the country as a whole. Spain has been the best for a while now, but their league has 3 or 4 good clubs and the rest are hindered by a deeply unfair TV right package that saw 2 clubs get the lionshare and the rest picking up scraps. They've just got a fairer deal and it's no wonder there's been a shakeup in La Liga combined with Barcelona's team coming to the end of their cycle and Real Madrid's problems.

The Premier League has never been so strong in relative terms. Aston Villa and Fulham before them came up and signed the kind of players you'd expect a Europa League level club to be after. Ok, Fulham failed miserably and most of the players ended up at poorer clubs back on the continent but that does not change the level of player promoted clubs were in for. Which is why the league is so strong. West Ham were below us last season, but look at their squad: Yarmolenko, Felipe Anderson, Lanzini, Fornals, Haller, Rice and others. The Premier League has never been so tough and we have to expect that to be reflected in results and in the table.

That also means we have a real opportunity, and I think Spur's total of 71 needed for 4th will be lower this season, to reflect the quality of the league. 65 might be enough for 4th. I also expect the relegation battle to see sides needing more than 34 points to stay up, but usually the teams at the bottom go on bad runs when confidence hits an all time low and the strong middle might steamroll them and result in actually a lower point total. Last season's middle of Leicester (9th with 52) to Bournemouth (15th with 45) should have a higher points total and I think they will all be closer to the top 6.

Remember under Martinez when 72 points was only enough for 5th?

John McFarlane Snr
303 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:13:14
Hi John [265],

It appears that you and I are not only in the same age group, we actually think the same. I found it difficult to find one player who had a bad game, and just as difficult to choose a 'Man of the Match'. The only criticism I have, and it may sound a little churlish, is how easily Richarlison goes to ground.

Hi Justin [266],

I hope you don't misinterpret this post, there is no sarcasm intended, it's just a feeble attempt at humour from a feeble-minded old man. If missing a goal-scoring opportunity similar to the ones that Davies and Iwobi missed, are regarded as criminal, then I would have qualified for a place in Walton Prison's team, probably serving an extended sentence.

As a below-average inside-left in a Sunday League side, I perfected the art of missing the unmissable. This has led me to believe that, because we are all mortal, we are all liable to make mistakes or misjudgements. While my first reaction is to raise my arms up in despair and disbelief, I then recall my halcyon days of leading the 'Misser Man of the Year.' I trust that you accept this post as a bit of fun.

Steve Ferns
304 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:36:13
John, I take your point on Richarlison. You have to wonder though, will he change? He's getting no decisions right now. The manager will tell him that his card is marked. He is the boy who cried wolf. Therefore, he needs to understand he won't get anything, unless the referee has to give it. Any doubt will go to the defender as Richarlison's reputation will proceed him.

You would like to think that he can learn, the hard way, that he needs to change. But diving is part of his nature, and his culture, so how easy is it to go against your natural instinct? He's probably diving when clipped without actually thinking to do it.

Mark Brennnan
305 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:51:03
Can we take it that the zonal marking was an experiment that went wrong and will no longer repeated?
Ray Roche
306 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:59:28
Steve @304,

I wonder if Deulofeu's reputation preceded him when he didn't get the “nailed on” penalty at Spurs yesterday?

John Pierce
307 Posted 20/10/2019 at 15:59:46
Twenty-four hours on and I'm still basking in the performance. For the first time this season, my bum left my seat and I genuinely clapped the moves being put together.

Look, I remain very cynical: it was not Silva's plan to play that team. I think fate forced his hand and sometimes an embattled coach needs a break. Maybe he got one. We were also playing West Ham (who alway play open football) they have been bailing Everton managers out for decades in the Premier League! The question is: Can he build on it or does he return to his conservative selections?!

However, so many nice take-aways from the game. The movement, something absent from our games to date, was there in spades. The front four moved but did so in patterns to give our attack structure. The ball stayed almost exclusively on the floor, it played to the strengths of the players in the team.

Gomes and Davies were outstanding in the first half: they didn't sit or recycle, they played beyond the halfway line, turned the ball over close to the forwards. All this was done at a tempo which simply overwhelmed the opponents. Our wasteful finishing made the game in doubt, however.

The second half, the tempo we played at could never be sustained and we sat 10 yards deeper. It allowed West Ham back in and the distance between the defence/midfield and the forwards became greater, our attacking patterns more disparate and sporadic.

This is were my doubts about the manager resurfaced, he did nothing to change the game or affect our shape to keep us effective. Iwobi, Walcott and Davies all faded and needed changing. That's a key deficiency in Silva's make up.

Up next week, Brighton will have two physical centre-halves. I'd start the same team, bar Walcott; Kean on the right for me. Holgate for Mina, assuming he's unfit. Keep the ball on the floor and in the channels.

It's a tiny step forward; he still cannot afford the drop points at Brighton. That's the hole he has dug for himself.

Tony Marsh
308 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:08:10
Great performance yesterday. In hindsight, it should've been a proper hiding for West Ham.

I'm not in the "Silva changes did the trick" camp as I believe, had Coleman and Schniderlin been available, they would've started. The changes were forced on Silva — not some great managerial master class.

Darren Hind
309 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:09:01
That decision was an absolute shocker, Ray.

Bill Gall
310 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:19:13
Well this game showed a glimmer of light at the end of a dark tunnel, the only misgivings I have is this is Everton – who have let me down more times than my lotto tickets.

They played as a team yesterday with a good couple of individual efforts that have been missing for weeks, and hopefully this will give the players encouragement to show what they are capable of. The next three games will show if we are improving or this game was just a one-off.

The manager may be pleased today but that means there should be extra intensity at Finch Farm to make sure the standard does not drop.

Ray Roche
311 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:21:59
Darren, VAR can only work if it's used correctly; while we have Premier League referees sat in front of a TV screen making the decisions, we will continue to be at risk from the “favouritism” that we see every week. Mina's “goal” would have stood if it was Van Dyke at Anfield, I firmly believe that.

As has been mentioned earlier, refs should be obliged to face the cameras and explain contentious decisions after every game. I remember Poll doing it on occasions some years ago but that was probably his ego dictating that.

Fans would accept poor decisions easier if we could see a genuine mistake being explained but, with Riley as head of refereeing, we will never see it.

Raymond Fox
312 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:34:53
When you look at the team selected yesterday, it was brave. I would have liked to have been a fly on the wall when the line-up was being made.

Some changes were forced because of suspensions and injuries, but the inclusion of Davies came out of the blue – he's been right out of favour with Silva.

I just wonder who had an input into the selection? Is Silva likely to take advice from Boa Morte or Brands on board, for instance? It was pretty radical considering the importance of the game.

Paul Tran
313 Posted 20/10/2019 at 16:58:41
John #307, Tony #308, it wouldn't be the first time a lucky manager stumbled across a winning formula. The trick is to use your luck and stick with 'your' change.

I remember in Italia 90, Robson had a few injuries to his stuttering England side. The players were lobbying for change, he rolled the dice and we ended up unluckily losing the semi to Germany.

The question is whether Silva uses his luck, or gets his generator out again.

Christy Ring
314 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:17:13
Ray, I believe Davies was picked because he had no-one else, he had to put Beni on the bench having played the previous day. Most importantly, he has to see now that Davies deservedly stays in the side.

Up to now Silva hasn't given Tom a chance, and that's not because he's protecting him, when the England U21 manager praised him for his Man of the Match performance as the holding midfielder, Silva said he's not a No 6.

Steve Ferns
315 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:23:30
JP, great to see the old JP back. We need to win games more often!
Ray Smith
316 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:40:01
Ray 311

As you say, but why wasn't VAR used for Mina's goal? —which was clearly an obvious mistake by the referee. As I mentioned earlier on the thread, MotD didn't even show it. So much for the BBC.

Play-acting players con the referee for innocuous fouls, the opposition crowd and harangue the referee, like Man Utd this afternoon VAR strikes the goal off, albeit it's Liverpool's.

If it's used properly, we would have won 3-0 yesterday.

John Pierce
317 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:41:38
Steve, you are cheeky SOB! 😜
Mark Guglielmo
318 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:51:05
Guys, guys, guys. Please go read up on VAR. Ray @311 VAR was used properly; the ref and his whistle were not.

It can't be used once the ref blows the whistle. The ONLY complaint here should be at the poop-head (that's allowed, right?) who blew the whistle prematurely, as that act rendered VAR a moot point in this instance.

Steve @296, I think what he was trying to say is that, for the first time in a very long time, there are only 2 standout sides, and spots 3-20 seem very much open to fluidity (which is what makes our horrid start all that much worse). Chelsea is in rebuild, Arsenal can't defend, Spurs are absolutely terrible right now, and don't get me started on Man Utd.

Tony @297, your eye test on Davies was with an eagle eye. Davies had the highest pass completion rate on the team (85%) and was only dispossessed once. The lad had an incredible match and, with Gbamin out, I hope he gets the nod more often than not moving forward.

Ray Roche
319 Posted 20/10/2019 at 17:55:39
Mark, I am well aware that the ref blowing his whistle negates VAR which shows the limitations of the system. The referee's mistakes do not become suddenly correct because he blows his whistle.
Ray Smith
320 Posted 20/10/2019 at 18:36:27
Mark @318,

Explain the referee's decision to rule out Mina's goal, which was a clear and obvious mistake?

Mark Guglielmo
321 Posted 20/10/2019 at 19:03:29
The Rays 319/320

I said nothing about the referee's mistake, in fact the opposite, but if folks are going to go on and on about how the whistle shouldn't have mattered, then they're simply not understanding how it works. Nothing more complex than that. You both commented on how how "if it was used correctly" when in fact it was. None of us can change that, including the guys in the review booth.

I even put forth a suggestion on how I'd like to see an adjustment made for when the referee DOES blow the whistle but the booth recognizes that the ref was way, way wrong. Did you fellas miss that?

Ray Roche
322 Posted 20/10/2019 at 19:39:19
Mark, at no time do I say “ if it was used correctly “.
Whether the ref blows his whistle or not, if he’s wrong then he’s wrong. VAR is not fit for purpose. The fact that it can only rectify a mistake if he DOESN’T Blow his whistle still leaves the system open to favouritism, or corruption as I prefer to call it. A whistle happy bellend like we had yesterday needs a spell in the Zingari until he can understand the game.
Ray Roche
323 Posted 20/10/2019 at 19:44:39
I beg your pardon Mark, in an earlier post I used that expression, my last comment referred to post 319. My earlier post means that if VAR was brought in and used “correctly”, ie, a system which allowed mistakes to be corrected then that’s fine, however, in its present form as we saw yesterday, it doesn’t. It is a failed system.
Stan Schofield
324 Posted 20/10/2019 at 20:02:07
Steve@302: Spot on. Not long ago the PL was relatively mediocre, but it's had a rapid ascent in quality. In our case, the quality we are capable of since the signings of last season is far higher than we've been used to from Everton for some time, except for Martinez's first season.

Some of the attacking play yesterday was (IMO) scintillating stuff, which should augur well so long as we don't shoot ourselves in the foot.

Mark Guglielmo
325 Posted 20/10/2019 at 20:30:14
I gotcha Ray @322/323, I was about to copy/paste your earlier comment :-)

While I do understand your frustration at the ref making such a bad call in this instance, we as fans are handcuffed by the current VAR guidelines. Dem's the rules as it were. This is the same way VAR is used in every other league/tournament that exists. Hey I don't like speed limits either but I have to live with them, y'know?

It sounds more like you simply don't want VAR in the EPL, which is another argument entirely. Either that or the "bias" or "fixed" nature of how the refs call EFC matches, which you & I are in complete agreement about! It just doesn't have anything to do with VAR, Just a bad ref. Cheers.

Ray Roche
326 Posted 20/10/2019 at 20:41:46
Mark, designed and used correctly VAR must be a good thing, however, take Mina’s goal. Our ref blew his whistle early instead of letting the play continue for a few moments. Now imagine Van Dyke doing the same thing in the Park End, but the ref let’s the play continue, the ball hits the net, THEN he blows up to disallow the goal and VAR comes into play. Goal correctly given. Same scenario, different result. No consistency, we all shout. The referee’s discretion? Open to favouritism which the correct use of VAR would eliminate.
John McFarlane Snr
327 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:08:16
Hi Dave [162] there are two games I've really enjoyed this season, and coincidentally they were both victories, the 3-2 win over Wolves and yesterday's game. I think you're being a bit harsh on Iwobi, but because you sit in the upper Bullens Road stand, your view is from a different angle and possibly nearer the action, and as I have often stated, we can go to the same match and see a different game.

You'll recall Dave, I said that when I joined the army in 1956, Everton's paintwork was green and cream, but I couldn't find anyone to confirm this. There is an article in yesterdays match day programme featuring the Bullens Road stand and it states, "Like the Leitch-designed Goodison Road stand, the Bullens was adorned with the trademark criss-cross motif on the balcony frontage, the metal was originally painted a dull green colour."

Although today's tall supporters might take a different view, at the time of opening, the stand was described by the Echo as offering best in class levels of comfort, 'Tip up chairs and plenty of knee-room make the stand one of the best of its kind in the country'. I think I'll sleep better tonight,.

Ernie Baywood
328 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:13:21
This is why VAR doesn't work.

The current use is supposed to be for offsides and clear and obvious errors. That would be fine - except that it influences referees' decision making because they've meddled in all sorts of decisions.

If the ref in the Liverpool game thought it might have been a foul but figured the challenge could go to VAR then he runs the risk that his omission isn't deemed clear and obvious.

Yet we have a referee do the opposite in our game. He blows his whistle despite having VAR available, which means his error can't be challenged. I don't really have an issue with VAR on our 'goal' except that it will influence refs to not blow. And if, on review, there had been an infringement, VAR may not have overruled it.

So VAR has a negative impact. Not in it's decision, but on the referees. VAR has meddled in far too much and gone well beyond its mandate.

If they can't use it correctly then just make it for offsides and let the refs ref the rest of the game.

Dave Abrahams
329 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:16:50
John (327) I’m glad you got that colour confirmed at last, I know you were convinced it was originally painted that colour.

Regarding Iwobi, I think you can see he dodges tackles no matter where you sit, I watched him especially in those incidents because when I previously saw that attitude someone mentioned he might have been suffering with a bug, so I gave him a walkover. I think I was right the first time, watch him yourself in future games.

Mark Guglielmo
330 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:26:26
Personally I believe in VAR and think it's necessary. I'll take 1 mistake as a trade-off for 99 correct ones.

We're all saying the same thing though; the REF blew the call, not VAR. It's great at fixing booking situations, it's great at determining if something should have been a penalty, and it's great for offside as you noted. But you can't damn the whole system because we were the unlucky ones this weekend. Let me ask you this; what if the call went the exact opposite way, and a clear WHU goal was disallowed because the ref screwed up? How would you feel then?

Ernie, the refs are told to do exactly as you described. Swallow the whistle. Our jerk did not; other jerks will (more often than not). Whether you believe they wouldn't for VVD but would for Mina is entirely up to you, but it sounds a bit conspiracy-theorist to me.

Brian Williams
331 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:36:48
Your points made me wonder whether the avoiding tackles is an Arsenal thing because Walcott does exactly the same, said it since he's been here.
Dave Abrahams
332 Posted 20/10/2019 at 21:43:59
Brian (331), I don’t know if it is an Arsenal thing, doubt it, but you are right Walcott plays that way as well, it doesn’t make them bad players but makes you wary of them, especially playing in games were passengers ‘ can do one’.
Frank Thomas
333 Posted 20/10/2019 at 22:34:59
What we saw yesterday was an accident by Silva. He played the only new combination of fit players (Gomes and Davies) that he left along with an attempt to appease the fans by dropping Siggy and moving Iwobi into the number 10 slot.
We then had the best attacking pair Bernard and Digne reestablish their brilliant partnership, prior to this game Iwobi was disrupting their flow. We then saw Sidibe bring out the best in Walcott those two really jelled. They were on the same wavelength. prior to today I also thought Walcott was not very good but maybe it's like buying sunglasses on a foggy day you think you have made a bad purchase and don't use them again.

My only concern is that he will drop Tom again and bring him on for the last 10 mins. Every minute on that pitch Tom is gaining experience by playing alongside Gomes.

Silva's problem is that he does not seem to understand his own players strengths. DCL is great for tiring out fast and very fit defences and Siggy is useful for an accurate shot or two and maybe we start playing Siggy for the last 20 minutes. Did you notice that when he came on Tom start to move deeper into our half but when Tom started moving forward again the pressure built up again. Top marks for Keane for challenging and winning the ball prior to the pass to Siggy that resulted in the 2nd Goal.

After that dreadful refereeing we might also see Sidibe off injured along with Mina. That would be a disaster.

I still hope we see Dowell player alongside Gomes one day hopefully next season.

Frank Thomas
334 Posted 20/10/2019 at 22:45:35
Mark (330) I would rather go a goal down if VAR is correctly used.

Why? Because even this season, game after game our attackers and even defenders are getting their shirts pulled to slow them down with no referee intervention and in that game yesterday it was the first time I witnessed an Everton player (Kean) tugged an oppositions players shirt and you know in your heart in the derby we are going to get penalised for an incident like that. I would hope that VAR or use of the TV that the ref can view we would at least get justice for us before we start fouling like the other teams.

Frank Thomas
335 Posted 20/10/2019 at 22:58:08
Thoughts on a possible new manager at the end of the season if we don't break into the top 4.

Ray Smith
336 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:05:22
Mark 321

That’s my point, it wasn’t used.

If it was, the error would have been rectified.

All I want is consistency! Is that too much ask for!!!

There are too many examples from yesterday’s VAR interpretations that beggar belief.

VAR is ruining the game, not for what it is, but the interpretation from an individual sitting nowhere near the venue.

So we are back to human interpretation v technology.

Ray Smith
337 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:07:02
Sorry 330
Joe Corgan
338 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:19:02
Frank 335: Thanks for the link. I don’t put any stock in that particular report. I don’t think we’re in the same league as Allegri right now. He’ll almost certainly have his mind set on one of the big boys of European football.

I also take issue with this sentence, “His managerial style will suit the Toffees as their current squad requires an extreme makeover.“

Now that’s lazy journalism. One of the reasons our form is blamed on Silva is precisely because he has a decent squad. Not world beaters and still requiring a few additions, but it shouldn’t need major surgery to get in or around the top six. Our current first team now consists of players bought mainly by Brands and he’s not going anywhere. If we do dispense with Silva’s services in the near future, I fully believe our next manager will be someone who will have agreed to primarily to work with the current squad and play to their strengths. There will not be another mass rebuilding in the near future.

Tom Bowers
339 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:27:40
It is frustrating to see so many shirt pulling offences go unpunished by the officials and I mean the ones where the ref can clearly see it but either is under instruction to ignore or just plain gutless to call a penalty.
In the main it is the defender who commits the offence and as long as it is unpunished it will be very popular with defenders.
There is also the despicable offence which is rife these days of a player deliberately attempting challenge but knowingly stamps on the instep of his opponent which, in my book is a red card every time but in the few instances it is called only merits a yellow by many weak referees.
VAR has it's critics but has to be used more to stamp out these bad practices.
God knows the game itself has suffered enough as a spectacle over the last ten years with the boring keep- ball tactics.
Ray Smith
340 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:39:47
Tom 339

In keeping with your comments, why is the ref surrounded by 2 or 3 players for every decision he makes from the opposition, without recourse?

Referees are weak in this respect. The Captain can approach the ref, no problems, but the baying entourage should be booked – no and ifs or buts. It wouldn’t take long for the message to get through.

Football is becoming a game for pansies and amateur actors.

Put 11 footballers against 11 professional rugby players and they wouldn’t last 5 minutes?

Is football a man's game or not?

Derek Knox
341 Posted 20/10/2019 at 23:44:36
Tom @ 339, I am in total agreement with you, BUT the game is so quick these days it is only with the benefit, which is rarely applied, of slow motion camera work, that either proves a player has been unfairly on the receiving end of a misjudgement, or has been the victim of 'artful dodgery'!

Being the Devil's Advocate here, but if it's Man Utd, Liverpool or whoever are the media darlings at that particular time, the post-mortem is invoked as it happens virtually!

Joe Corgan
342 Posted 21/10/2019 at 00:08:22
No Ray (340) it’s not. It’s a game enjoyed by men, women, children and just about every other demographic you can think of.

While I don’t disagree with your sentiments you can could have worded it better.

Lester Yip
343 Posted 21/10/2019 at 00:49:17
Just want to ask do we have a set-piece coach? It just seems that we haven't been able to score from corners and free kicks for a long time. In Moyes era, we won less corners than we are now. But with Cahill/Lescott and Arteta delivering it, we are unstoppable. Now we have so many corners, but hardly saw any of those being converted?
Mark Guglielmo
344 Posted 21/10/2019 at 01:02:20
Frank 334/Ray 336

I must be doing a horrible job of saying the same thing 5 times over at last count.

You can continue to say "if it was used" or "why wasn't it used" all you want. But it's only demonstrating that you don't understand VAR. I really have tried to explain this multiple times, but it's not sticking. I can't justify the ref blowing the whistle, not only erroneously but early. But I can tell you, factually, that once he does make that bad, very human call, that VAR cannot be used no matter how heinous that error.

I am not disagreeing with you about the refs, the crappy whistle, or how it seems that these calls only go against us. I'm attempting to inform you as to when VAR can/can't be used. Don't take it up with me. Petition FIFA and UEFA if you'd like.

Derek Thomas
345 Posted 21/10/2019 at 01:24:41
VAR is great - in theory. VAR in its Mk I version (1.0 for the modern tech savvy reader) as used now isn't, in fact it may cause more problems than it solves...hands up who thought that would never happen.

Frank ( no relation) @ 333 & 334, has it pretty well right. Its skewing the Referees decision making (not too hot before VAR tbh) they're blowing either too early or not at all / too late.

I used to think that VAR should only be used by the Referee to confirm what he though he saw. But this won't work as they seem to see SFA

VAR Half Term Report; must try harder.

Mark Guglielmo
346 Posted 21/10/2019 at 01:35:18
Derek, exactly. The refs have been told to be cautious (or conservative if you like) with the whistle, with the understanding that VAR will sort it afterwards. It isn't VAR's fault that our ref seemed to have skipped the training.

I suggested above (without using the v1.0 description you aptly chose to) that I'd really like to see a future modification where the VAR refs upstairs can override a very poor call on the field. Certainly they all saw the field ref blow the call. Unfortunately they cannot in its current form but it would be a big improvement.

Ernie Baywood
347 Posted 21/10/2019 at 03:07:42
Mark, that's the point. Forget about the call against Mina - that's human error. No conspiracy theory here.

But VAR isn't being used to correct human omissions. The refs are being conservative and the game is so subjective that their 'decisions by omission' are not being overruled. We have introduced a system that promotes 'swallowing the whistle'... and then we treat that as an on-field judgement that no offence was committed which they don't want to overrule unless it's clear and obvious.

Clear and obvious was their mandate. But we're reviewing everything. We're telling refs to be conservative because VAR will review it. It's nonsense and it demonstrably doesn't work. The refs aren't making decisions and VAR isn't making them afterwards.

What you're proposing won't happen. We'll never referee the game from the stands.

Just let the referee call all of the subjective stuff and keep VAR for offsides or mistaken identity. I'd rather accept that mistakes will even themselves out than have a situation like this.

Disciplinary matters can be dealt with after the match.

I reckon a ref gives the Deulofeu penalty 7 out of 10 times. With VAR he'll probably let it go to video. And VAR won't overrule the referee. We're not getting the correct decisions except on offsides.

John Pierce
348 Posted 21/10/2019 at 04:37:37
Re the Mina disallowed goal.

A corner in the first half (I think the one Davies should have converted), the replays showed Gomes blocking for Mina. Diop was well in the referee's ear about it.

The subsequent corner Tierney blew against Gomes. He spent the rest of the game looking for it. Gomes did turn into the player to set Mina free for the goal.

I didn't like it any more than the next man, but West ham ‘gamed' the referee. Perhaps we should be more savvy and not repeatedly try the same ploy or at best change up the blocker?

As for the interpretation of referee. It was right, if obvious to him he's well within his rights to call it, otherwise why blow for anything?

John Pierce
349 Posted 21/10/2019 at 05:11:12
On VAR, a subject I've largely left alone since the very early weeks of the season, when you have a system which alters the officiating you have problem.

If you can build a credible case for any subjective call to go either way then it's not clear and obvious, however much you slow it down and review it. VAR should only overturn the biggest of errors; Henry's handball versus Ireland for example. This weekend, the Watford penalty is first one I've seen which was absolutely clear.

Clear is 90/10, not 70/30 and certainly not 60/40. So whilst many might argue it's not working I think it is. This is not to say I support it, far from it. If you use subjective elements in your protocols you deserve all the stick you get.

When that threshold is that high then it's pointless to review every key decision. They won't be overturned. Far better to implement a challenge system for clubs to use only were the error is so gross it materially affects the game.

As for the quality of referees. Well, I can say with experience and a little knowledge they will not get better. The persistent disregard and abuse for officiating at all levels of the game has resulted in much smaller pool of qualified people. That naturally produces a lower standard without numerical competition. Another reason technology will further intercede in the game.

Until the sport recognizes officials are part of the experience and fan bases continue to vilify them things will not change.

Ray Roche
350 Posted 21/10/2019 at 09:51:57
Mark @344

I shall write this slowly because I know you can't read very fast. Now, pay attention.

What I am saying is that VAR, in it's present form, is not fit for purpose. I have tried to explain it to you but I must be doing a horrible job.

I used the Mina goal as an example. Our referee disallowed it because he was whistle happy, another referee waits a moment until we think we've scored and THEN blows his whistle, so, as I understand it, a "goal" can be looked at by the VAR Chimps in their cage who would then allow it.* Two identical situations, two different outcomes. THAT is what I am getting at. We are at the mercy of the individual referee and his incompetence, favouritism or dishonesty (delete as necessary).

VAR can be a tool for clearing up disputed decisions but all referees must play it the same way or it's no use.

In your post @346 you say "see a future modification where the VAR refs upstairs can override a very poor call on the field" — which is what I have been alluding to. It needs, as you now agree, modification. Ergo, currently, not fit for purpose at this point.

(You remind me of my old Maths teacher... he used to talk down to us as well. ;-)

*John Pierce makes a good point that Gomes "blocked" the run of Diop. I thought that he just stood in his way as opposed to grappling with him or holding him. This would not be a foul anywhere else, he would be "standing his ground" as MotD would tell us. It was a goal and it should have stood.

Mark Guglielmo
351 Posted 21/10/2019 at 13:05:24
Ray, I didn't insult you, so kindly do the same in return. Surely you can see the nuance in what I've been saying, consistently, throughout this thread. Once the whistle blows, no VAR. But sometimes the whistle shouldn't blow so VAR can do what it was designed to do.

I know your position, and have all along, though it did take me many hours to get through it because I can't reed so gud. The issue is that you're whinging over HOW VAR works. In other words, you may as well yell at the clouds when it rains. You'll get equally as far. Another poster (John P I think) understands VAR's purpose re: "clear and obvious". So in what I've suggested, it would work perfectly well. There's no "refereeing from the booth", there would simply be a means for them to overturn egregious errors by the on-field ref when an error is "clear and obvious."

Did you know that 100% off goals are VAR-reviewed? 98% of them are "silent reviews" and supporters aren't even aware they've happened. In that 2% where there is an error, VAR could step in to let the ref know he messed up and that a VAR review would be necessary. Which would then be up to the on-field ref to take a second (or third) look, just as it is now. In its current state, that can't happen because of the early whistle. And no one, not ever, will be able to remove the human error component. We can only use technology in an attempt to mitigate some of those errors.

You're acting as though that would be the norm when in fact it would be a very rare occurrence. My argument is, in those rare occurrences, there should be the failsafe to possibly fix it.

You're also saying that, because that 2% exists, that VAR doesn't work (Google "straw man" and "false equivalency"). If you know of anything in this world that's 100% perfect, I'm all ears.

You just want to complain, which is your right of course. But you remind me of my father, who's 74. He just keeps arguing and complaining for the sake of it too. I also remain civil with him, and he me. And with that, I will bow out of this particular discussion and leave you to your rant. Cheers.

Ray Roche
352 Posted 21/10/2019 at 13:18:51
Mark, my comments were not to be taken as insulting but mildly humorous. Lighten up son.

And yes, I am aware that all goals are checked. And I do have a very good idea of how VAR works. Or doesn't, as the case may be.

My sympathies are with your Dad, we're in the same age group.

I do know someone who's 100% perfect. Or so she tells me. 😉

Rant(?) over.

John McFarlane Snr
353 Posted 21/10/2019 at 13:25:23
Hi Ray [350] and Mark [351],

The simple solution, in my opinion], is to abolish VAR. I know that this will never happen, but I'm staking a claim to a portion of cloud, I feel it would be less painful than banging my head against a wall.

Ray Roche
354 Posted 21/10/2019 at 13:39:15
John, has VAR improved football so far? Not in my opinion, although it’s early days yet. I said on a TW thread recently that if the “Ref in the office” can’t decide in ten seconds then it’s not a clear and obvious error. It takes too long and is taking the passion out of football. Weren’t Wolves ready to restart the game on Saturday before the goal was disallowed? Ridiculous.
John McFarlane Snr
355 Posted 21/10/2019 at 14:19:55
Hi Ray [354],

In a word, Ray, my answer is No. I think that it's actually the one thing that could deter me from attending games, and I'm positive that poor performances, and even relegation, would not stop me from sitting in my seat at the Park End.

Mark Guglielmo
356 Posted 21/10/2019 at 15:11:31
Ray @354, I know, I'm a cheeky little bastard but almost always in good fun. High five (if you can get your old arms over your head – I kid, I kid)! I'm not averse to change if it improves things for the greater good even if a few isolated incidents are glaring in their failure.

I'm not sure how familiar you are with American football, but I root for the Oakland Raiders and, during a playoff contest vs the New England Patriots, something called the "tuck rule" came into effect. In short, the Raiders sacked the Patriots QB, forcing a fumble which they recovered and would have sealed the win for them! But the refs claimed that Tom Brady had "tucked" the ball and thus it was not a fumble. Naturally, they then went on to win the game, knocking my guys out of the playoffs. Man, did that suck! The next year they changed the rule so it wouldn't happen again. I got over it, despite how livid I was on that day.

There has to be some merit to VAR's place in modern football or FIFA wouldn't have adopted it for the World Cup, and all the other top flights (Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A, and Ligue 1) as well as most "lesser" leagues in the world have been using it for years, no?

John @355, I wish I could go to every match! I'm very jealous of you locals.

Steve Ferns
357 Posted 21/10/2019 at 15:15:15
Mark, FIFA resisted VAR for years. They didn't want it. We've had decades of pressure for FIFA, UEFA and the FA to adopt video technology.

It wouldn't surprise me if they "wanted it to fail". It's still a "trial", isn't it? So they can announce they tried it and it didn't work and get rid of it. Probably a warped way of thinking, but I wouldn't put anything past FIFA.

Mark Guglielmo
358 Posted 21/10/2019 at 16:02:51
That wouldn't surprise me in the least, Steve. I also am not surprised at it being implemented in the EPL, likely also in a begrudging fashion. Not sure about the trial aspect, but I am sure it now exists because football is very much a global game now, with less and less league-specific style of play, and more and more needing to adjust to the influx of Brazilian, Portuguese, Spanish, Nigerian, and so forth, players.

Heck look at our starting XI from this past week;

Pickford (English of course)
Digne (French)
Keane (English)
Mina (Colombian)
Sidibe (French)
Davies (English)
Gomes (Portuguese)
Bernard (Brazilian)
Iwobi (Nigerian)
Walcott (English)
Richarlison (Brazilian)
Sigurdsson (Icelandic)
Kean (Italian)

Right? Heck isn't the EPL putting in place a rule stating that teams can only have a max of 13 internationals? My only point is that it makes sense that there are as many similarities between leagues as possible, because of the players. It isn't the '80s anymore. Everyone should read "Who Moved My Cheese?" In only 80ish pages but it perfectly encapsulates change and why it's necessary.

Bill Gall
359 Posted 21/10/2019 at 16:03:23
I am not a fan of VAR, my dislike of it is that it seems to take the excitement out of the game when you score a goal. Suddenly you go from wild excitement to waiting for a couple of minutes to see if you have scored. Yes, it may reverse some calls, but the way the law is now spelled out, it misses others by not reviewing them, and the new ruling of if a ball hits your hand unintentionally, as long as you don't score from it it is okay, but if you score from it it is a foul, does not make sense.

Fans enjoyed games for their passion and excitement that they could get involved in, but to me someone sitting in a studio miles away should have no part in settling the outcome of a game and destroying that passion and excitement. And now their is talk about having robots as lines persons, who will the fans be able to shout at if that happens.

Football has always been a sport for fans from the beginning, but it is now being controlled by people who are only interested in the financial aspect of the sport. Rules of the game are for all levels of the sport, from the grassroots to the premier league, and internationals. It is not just for the elite who are controlled by Sky, it is for all levels and as such, if VAR is going to be used, it should be used at all levels of football.

The other problem that may arise is young people who would like to become future referees, may change their minds, with the knowledge that their decisions will be overlooked by someone in a studio, that can overrule them. Yes, some of the rules of the game should have been examined, but not just for the elite, but for everyone from amateur to professionals, and not to increase media coverage.

Ray Roche
360 Posted 21/10/2019 at 16:04:01

Cheeky little bastard might be a bit OTT. Cheeky little sod will do.

I embrace change if it's a benefit to the game. In fact, there are several changes I'd love to see in football. A quick and accurate VAR amongst them.

Interesting comments by Steve there. FIFA? Wouldn't be surprised if large brown envelope smoothed the introduction of VAR. Since everybody's favourite uncle Sepp was found out, nothing would surprise me anymore.

Cynical? Dead right. I know the square root of nothing about American Football other than it's called “football “, when it's not, and it's played by big blokes wearing armour who wouldn't last five minutes in Rugby League.

Mark Guglielmo
361 Posted 21/10/2019 at 16:16:29
Bill @359,

This " seems to take the excitement out of the game when you score a goal, suddenly you go from wild excitement to waiting for a couple of minutes to see if you have scored..." is the best, most valid mark against that I've read and can agree with. Imagine scoring a game-winning goal in the 93rd minute of a hotly contested matchup, only to have it taken away! But then the rational half of my brain says "but what if those 2 dropped points (for the losing side) are the difference between qualifying for Europe, or not?" It's easy to say 'well, that's football,' but it's a tough pill to swallow given how tight a table tends to be.

Ray, lol at your football players in armor vs. rugby comment. I'm not even a fan of the sport as it's been regulated to death, albeit often necessary to protect the lives (yes, lives) of its players. But enough about that.

I can't wait until we win a match thanks to VAR! ;-)

Steve Ferns
362 Posted 21/10/2019 at 16:58:49
Ray, who is your favourite uncle? Bill or Sepp!
Paul Tran
363 Posted 21/10/2019 at 18:02:07
My take on VAR is that it has multiplied the number of disputes rather than reducing them. Plus it takes the genuine spontaneous excitement out of the game and replaces it with artificial, delaying excitement. It also leads to referees subcontracting their decision-making to 'the box', the exception being Saturday's clown.

Apart from that, its fine.

Who Moved My Cheese is a nice little parable, but if you want something for implementing change that's more detailed & rounded and involves the participants, I'd recommend John Kotter's Eight Steps.

Mark Guglielmo
364 Posted 21/10/2019 at 18:40:17
Thanks for the book recommendation, Paul. I'm going to check that one out. I find a lot of value in these types of books in my professional career.
Paul Tran
365 Posted 21/10/2019 at 18:42:29
My pleasure, Mark, and if you're helping people/teams through change, it's worth looking at 'Managing Transitions' by William Bridges.
Matthew Williams
366 Posted 23/10/2019 at 13:05:50
I was thinking yesterday, whilst supping my pint of Mild (like my nature), how nice it would be to play the Hammers in a Cup Final!

One day, eh, Blues...

Same again on Saturday, please, Mr Silva.

Justin Doone
367 Posted 24/10/2019 at 08:14:07
My VAR understanding is it can only be used in penalty and goal decisions. Possibly for bookings when wrong identity has occurred.

Minas perfectly good header was disallowed before the ball crossed the line and therefore no goal decision to bring VAR into play.

Aparantly Gomes walking towards Mina in the box interfered with the defender marking Mina. Despite the defender grabbing Minas shirt the referee appears to have blown against Gomes blocking.

I'm not a big fan of VAR because of the inconsistent decisions around when it's used, the time taken to review, the lack of consistency in decisions (eg. handball) and the lack of communication to help educate everyone why decisions are given and if it has been reviewed or not.

West Ham won a corner when it should have been an Everton free kick. If they had scored from the corner would it have been disallowed upon review of the corner being awarded or not because the corner of was a break in play and not directly leading to a goal?

I have no idea but I'm sure there's inconsistency around it and we probably would have been left on the wrong end whilst other teams would not.

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